Right now, Nathaniel Clyne is the best English right back in football. And today he is a Liverpool player following the completion of a £12.5M move from Southampton. Not only that, but the player chose Liverpool despite reports of interest from Manchester United and Chelsea.
By any measure, that makes Clyne a very, very good signing. It’s not just the fans who are excited by it, either, as former and now once again current teammate Adam Lallana spoke of the player’s talent, calling Liverpool’s capture of him a coup—though not really a surprise, as Lallana had known it was likely coming for some time.
"I’ve spoken to him and I was actually on holiday with him for a little bit this summer," Lallana told the Liverpool Echofollowing the announcement. "We were in America together. I managed to speak to him about it there and I kind of knew it could be on the cards. His intentions were there and he was hoping the deal could get sorted.
"Liverpool explains itself. The whole world knows about Liverpool. I just said to him that I hoped the deal would get done as it’ll be a great place for him to improve even more, especially under Brendan Rodgers’ guidance."
Right back was one of Liverpool’s key positions of need, with Glen Johnson departing, Javi Manquillo out of favour, and Jon Flanagan’s fitness a question mark. Given how many boxes Clyne checks, his age and talent and that he still has room to improve but also for his status as English trained, it’s hard to think of a better signing the club could have made.
"It’s a massive signing for us," added the midfielder. "I played with him for a couple of seasons at Southampton and since they signed him, he’s come on a lot. To manage to persuade him to sign for Liverpool—as I’m sure there would have been other top clubs, and even European clubs interested in him—is a great coup for us.
"He’s as solid as they come for a right-back and getting forward, he’s got goals in his locker. In one versus one situations defensively, he’s the kind of full-back you just don’t want to come up against. He’s quite quiet and likes to just get on with his football, but he’s a great lad and knowing the Liverpool dressing room, he’ll fit in absolutely perfectly."
Clyne joins an already long and largely impressive list of new signings for Liverpool, sharing the spotlight with Brazilian attacker Roberto Firmino and veteran midfielder James Milner. The club have also signed Danny Ings, Joe Gomez, and and Adam Bogdan, all of whom show promise and fill positions of need.