Keith Fahey has admitted Blues could be about to see his best football – by providing him with the right platform.
Under Alex McLeish, Fahey was often required to play wide on the left, creating a narrow midfield.
The Irish international made his name at St Patrick’s Athletic in the centre of the park and that’s where Chris Hughton has utilised him in Blues’ last three games after his return from groin surgery.
“I want to get strong, fitter and sharper and make one of those midfield spots my own because since I’ve come here I haven’t really had a chance in there,” he said.
“There have been excuses about not playing me in there and playing a three. I need games to get in there and know the position again, get a consistent run. I feel I’m more suited to the middle.
“I think I was a little bit undervalued, yes. You are never going to see the best of me out on the left and you’re never going to see the best of me if I’m thrown into the middle one game, then back out to the left one game.
“I need consistency in there to start learning the position again, I haven’t played there for that long. It’s easy to forget how to play in there. I need a run of games and to learn the role all over again.”
Fahey made his European debut for Blues at NK Maribor.
He said he was looking forward to tonight’s Europa League test at Club Bruges and that the competition meant something to the players.
“The fans love it. It’s great to have something like this for them, to get away into Europe, and for the players it’s another thing on your CV,’’ he said. “You would rather be in this competition than not.”
Meanwhile at home, Fahey believes the rest of the Championship are sitting up and taking notice of Blues at last.
Hughton’s side have stayed under the radar so far due to a summer of turmoil, personnel changes and the distraction of the Europa League.
But the defeat of Leicester City, following on from away success at Nottingham Forest and NK Maribor – who had won five and drawn one of their previous six home games in Europe – have been eye-catching.
“I think it has sent out a bit of a message,” said Keith Fahey. “Teams might have been taking us lightly.
“And I think it was a message to ourselves we can compete with these teams.
“The second half against Leicester was a lot better than the first-half performance, so what we’ve got to do now is take that into the next game and do it from the start.”