By Dan Harrison
Alex McLeish has praised the "phenomenal" attitude shown by Stephen Warnock as the full-back looks to stake his claim ahead of the new campaign.
Warnock slipped down the pecking order last season under the previous regime but is hoping to get a fresh opportunity under new boss McLeish.
And the manager insists Warnock has done his chances of earning a first team recall no harm after impressing on the training field in the past week.
The 29-year-old former Liverpool and Blackburn defender enjoyed a superb first season in claret and blue after moving from Ewood Park in August 2009.
His excellent form propelled him into England's World Cup squad as second choice left-back to Chelsea's Ashley Cole.
But a difficult start to 2010-11 saw him fall out of favour.
However, McLeish's "clean slate" policy means Warnock and other players who found themselves on the periphery last term will have the opportunity to impress.
"Stephen's attitude has been phenomenal and that's what I expect of top pros playing at a top level," said McLeish.
"He's trained really well. He played for England not so long ago and I think he's a terrific player.
"I need to see if he can be part of the future here.
"He has come back in and for me has staked his claim with his attitude alone."
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