Koeman courting Clyne cap for Roy Hodgson’s England
Southampton boss Ronald Koeman has paid a huge compliment to Nathaniel Clyne by claiming he is the best right back he has coached during his 15-year tenure.
“In my opinion, Clyne is one of the best right full-backs that I’ve had in my teams during the last 15 years,” he said.
“That means a lot because I like to play with offensive right and left full backs and he has that qualities, he’s fast and gives good crosses,” continues Koeman.
“I’m happy but I’m not in the position to tell the national coach of somebody else about him. He shows his quality from the beginning of the season and if he continues like that he will get a call, for sure.
“If he shows his qualities game by game, then I’m sure he will get finally a call to be a national player.”
The 23-year-old has been one of the shining lights this season at St Mary’s this term, and according to Koeman, is on course to earning his first England cap, and could be in contention with Glen Johnson and Kyle Walker both currently injured.
“I think he is ready,” the Dutch boss added. “He has a lot of experience. He is playing very well from the beginning of the season and scored a great goal [against Arsenal].
“His performances are very good and he is an option for the national coach but I’m very happy to have him in our team because he brings a lot of quality and experience. It is very important for the team.”
Only Chelsea are above Southampton in the Premier League, who are 5/1 to finish in the top six, and Koeman insists the Blues are a great template to follow.
“To win points, to win games, it starts at the back,” he said. “It starts in the defence, that’s the reason that we bought Fraser Forster because he is a fantastic goalkeeper with a future in the club.
“We have a strong defence. It’s all about organisation in the team and one time a week we do unit training. We make three groups and we have training for the defenders, for midfielders and for forwards,”
“That is an example of how we try to do work the whole week. Building a house you don’t start at the top, you start at the bottom. That makes winning teams”.
For Clyne, his future looks promising, and under Koeman he can only get better.