Trinidad and Tobago captain Dwight Yorke says Sunderland manager Roy Keane has not been happy with his form at the club.
Yorke returned to English football with The Black Cats in late August after a spell in Australia with Sydney FC.
However, the former Aston Villa and Manchester United has struggled to claim a regular first-team place under former Red Devils team-mate Keane.
The 35-year-old is eager to make his contribution to Sunderland's season.
"Even late on in my career, I want to play every game," Yorke said in the Daily Mail. "When I've been left out, I've gone to speak to the boss because I feel I have a lot to give. He hasn't seen it that way and says my performances have not been up to scratch. I have to take that on the chin, but it is frustrating."
Yorke has occasionally found himself sitting on the sidelines he has proved he can fight his way back into the Sunderland starting XI and says he relishes the challenge of doing so.
"The competition for places in midfield is good at the moment and that's the way football should be," added Yorke, who hopes he has done enough to be included for the visit of Preston this weekend. "If you're not in the team it's about fighting your way back in and when you get your chance you've got to take the opportunity.
"I don't know it any other way. That's the way it's always been. It's good and healthy. Once every player has realised that's what football is all about we'll all benefit. When you think you should be in the team and you see someone else come in and score it brings a good competitive edge to the team. I think that's what we need, it's what the gaffer's trying to create. No-one's place is safe, even me and that's good. We have to recognise that and rise to the occasion,” Yorke added.