Scott Malone moved to Derby County in the summer after spending time at Premier League side Huddersfield Town.
The 27-year-old was one of the first to arrive under Frank Lampard and failed to feature in the opening weeks of his career at Pride Park.
Malone has made 13 starts this term, coming off the bench twice in the league to equal 15 appearances.
His place, however, could soon be under threat with the latest Rams arrival almost fit to make his Derby debut.
Ashley Cole arrived towards the latter stages of the January transfer window but has spent the last two weeks getting back to full fitness having not played since October when he was with MLS side LA Galaxy.
Put yourself in Malone’s shoes; he must be quite annoyed, deep down, at the fact that Cole could walk straight into the side.
That would irk the most placid of person, having played relatively well in the games in which he has featured.
Cole is a household name, and a former teammate of Lampard at Chelsea and internationally with England.
There was a lot made of the 28-year-old’s arrival, and the fans will want to see their marquee veteran signing play, and that would come at the expense of Malone.
Training hard and showing he is capable of usurping the former Arsenal left-back, needs to remain focused and train hard – and not get petered at the fact he could be dropped because Cole is who he is.
Although, you know Malone could feel slighted and upset, and that be channelled in two different ways.
He might look upon it as being ousted for no reason other than a name.
When he should channel it positively and work hard to keep Cole the side, that is the task with the added competition.
Malone needs to remain calm and patient and not feel any disdain – channel any negative energy and use it to show Lampard beyond any reasonable doubt that he is indeed the man for the left-back berth.