Bali Mumba is concentrating on becoming “an all-round player” rather than tying himself down to any one position.
In the early stages of his Sunderland career, the 17-year-old has been used as a central midfielder but on Tuesday he showed another side to his game. Not only did Mumba play at right wing-back in the Football League Trophy win over Notts County, he was the best player on the pitch.
Mumba has played right-back for England’s age-group teams and centre-back for Sunderland’s. Adam Matthews looks secure as the Black Cats’ first-choice right-back, but with Donald Love and Denver Hume injured, they have another option were the Welshman to be unavailable.
For Mumba, it is just about getting as much time on the pitch as possible while he learns his game. When asked what his best position was, he replied: “Many people have asked me that and I don’t have an answer. I’m just an all-round player, I would say – midfield, full-back, I’m not really too fussed as long as I get the experience.
“I want to be a player who’s able to play in different positions. If the gaffer gives me a task to do, I just want to be able to do it for the team and get on with it, don’t worry about it’s not my position, just have that mindset of, ‘This is my job.’”