Clyne wants to keep improving

  • Last Updated: November 24 2012, 13:57 GMT

Nathaniel Clyne is enjoying life at Southampton and has "no regrets" about turning down a summer move to Sunday's opponents Newcastle.

Nathaniel Clyne: Turned down move to Newcastle

The 21-year-old came through the Crystal Palace academy and quickly became one of the most talked about prospects in the Football League.

Manchester United, Ajax and Everton were all linked with moves for the right-back, who instead plumped for a move to newly-promoted Southampton this summer.

It is a move Clyne has enjoyed so far and has no regrets about turning down other interest, including an offer from Sunday's visitors Newcastle.

"I was close [to going there]," Clyne said. "They are a good a side but I chose Southampton because it was closer to where I live.

"It's where I preferred to come. I didn't get a chance to speak to Alan Pardew.

"Southampton just appealed to me more. They've got good facilities here, the way they play football has been good and I was promised first-choice football.

"I thought I was going to get more game time, which I have been getting, so I am pleased.

"I have no regrets about coming here. I have been playing a lot of games for the club and that's what I like.

"I didn't really want to be on the bench. I just wanted to be playing, getting game time and improving as a player."

It is advice he would give to fellow young players attracting interest from larger clubs, including former Crystal Palace team-mate Wilfried Zaha.

The 20-year-old has impressed so much for the Eagles this season that he was handed his England debut in the recent friendly with Sweden and has a host of top clubs queuing up to secure his signature.

"There was a buzz about him" Clyne said. "He had been training with the first team for a number of years before he got his debut.

"It was only a matter of time about when they put him in and when he came in there was no stopping him.

"I suggest that he should just go wherever he can get game time and where he can play and just improve."

Despite his advice to snub the big guns, Clyne is not pretending life has been easy at Southampton so far.

Nigel Adkins' side are in the relegation zone after a poor start to the campaign in which their porous defence has been highlighted as a key issue.

"It is tough when you concede a lot of goals, but we're going to get better," Clyne said.

"The only way we're going to get better is learning from our mistakes. We're working hard on the training field on our defensive shape and defensive duties so it will get better.

"It has been tough. It is a lot harder than the Championship. Players are quicker, faster, stronger.

"For me, it has been a difficult challenge but I am warming to it, getting better and I just want to improve as a player. I feel like I have been improving."


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