STEVE Lomas believes left back Scott Malone has the raw abilities to be a "very good player" in the future, but says the 22-year-old is still a work in progress.
Malone produced a man-of-the-match display against Leeds United at The Den on Saturday, scoring the second goal in a 2-0 victory.
The ex-Bournemouth defender returned to the side earlier this month in the wake of Shane Lowry's suspension and has since put in three impressive performances.
But boss Lomas has told Malone that he will have to maintain recent high standards if he is to keep his place in the team.
Lomas said: "Scott was told that he had the next three games and it was down to him to make sure he got the fourth after that. We've got a very good left back coming back in Shane Lowry, so if he rests on his laurels he will be out of the team quicker than he got in it.
"Scott has come in and done very well. He is a young man and we've asked him to focus defensively first, and then attack. Maybe in the past he was too focused on attacking.
"He's got the natural attributes to be a very good player – he's 6ft 1in tall, decent on the ball and can run forward. He is still a young man learning the game and he's got a bright future ahead of him if he keeps listening to me and Tim Breacker, who was an excellent attacking full back – he's trying to help him."