United starlet target warned against 'big club' move


Crystal Palace starlet Nathaniel Clyne has been warned against moving too soon amidst interest from Manchester United.

The England U21 international emerged on the Old Trafford radar after an impressive performance against the Red Devils in the Carling Cup, which backed up his fine form in the Npower Championship over the last year-and-a-half.

Manager Dougie Freedman is well aware of the pitfalls that can come with a move though, and believes turning down the likes of Manchester United could be the best option at the current time.

"Nathaniel has been linked with lots of clubs because that is what agents do best," Freedman told the Croydon Guardian.

"I know what happens if you move too early because I've been there and done it, your career can stall. I know he should stay and deep down Nathaniel knows he should stay, but when certain representatives decide it is best for a 19-year-old to move away it is difficult.

"We gave him a chance in life, taught him the rights from wrongs and he is still learning the game. Nathaniel has gone from an OK player to one who is in the England U21s and playing some of his best stuff. I would like to think that if he stayed he would keep on improving."

The Daily Mail reported that Manchester United were lining up the 19-year-old as a long-term replacement for club legend Gary Neville, who retired midway through the campaign last season.

Injuries this term have affected the Red Devils heavily in the right back position, with young centre backs Chris Smalling and Phil Jones often filling in for the absent Rafael and Fabio da Silva, who can both play in the position.

Sir Alex Ferguson is being tipped to make several moves when the transfer window re-opens in 2012, although has stressed on several occasions in the past that January is not his favourite time to do business.

The Manchester United manager will have to weigh-up all his options in relation to defence before deciding on whether to make a transfer move, and Clyne could be one of the players on the radar if it's decided that back-up is needed by the champions.

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