BOSS Jonathan Woodgate insists Chris Mepham’s attitude has been “great” behind the scenes at Cherries, despite his struggle for game time at club level.

The 23-year-old has been predominantly used as a backup centre-back since head coach Woodgate’s arrival in February – with Steve Cook and Cameron Carter-Vickers the preferred pairing at the heart of the defence.

Mepham’s most recent start for Cherries came in a 2-1 defeat at Queens Park Rangers two months ago.

He came off the bench against Southampton in the FA Cup and Swansea in the Championship since then – but has been an unused substitute in the league for the past seven games.

Asked about the Mepham’s lack of game time behind Cook and Carter-Vickers, Woodgate told the Daily Echo: “All he can be at the minute is a just a top pro and doing his work, week in, day in, day out – he can do that.

“With those two in front of him he’s found it difficult, but they have performed.

“But probably the reason they have performed is because Meps is behind them, pushing them every single game.”

As well as promotion back to the top flight with Cherries this campaign, Mepham will be eager to feature for Wales at this summer’s European Championship.

He played 90 minutes for his country in a World Cup qualifier against Belgium last month, before 56 minutes against the Czech Republic.

“His attitude has been great,” said Woodgate.

“He went away with Wales and performed then in games with them.

“He’s got the Euros to look forward to, so he needs to stay fit, he needs to stay committed and he’s doing that.”

Mepham will hope to feature for Cherries when they make the trip to relegation-threatened Wycombe on Saturday.