Southampton just shouldn’t sanction loan exit for their 21-year-old starlet and here’s why


Why Southampton should keep hold of Yan Valery amid loan interest

According to Hampshire Live, Southampton youngster Yan Valery has attracted loan interest from German Bundesliga side Schalke due to his lack of game time in the Premier League this season.

However, the Saints are unlikely to sanction a temporary exit for the right-back before the end of the January window. Manager Ralph Hasenhuttl has made it clear that he wishes to keep hold of his first-team stars, even those who haven’t played regularly so far. 

Valery has addressed speculations linking him with a temporary exit from St. Mary’s in the current window. The 21-year-old has revealed that he is keen to play week in week out but is aware of the need to prove himself to the manager. As things stand, the youngster is happy to compete for a place in the side. (h/t Hampshire Live)

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LEICESTER, ENGLAND – JANUARY 16: Yan Valery of Southampton looks on during the Premier League match between Leicester City and Southampton at The King Power Stadium on January 16, 2021, in Leicester, England. (Photo by Tim Keeton – Pool/Getty Images)

Valery’s rise and struggles at Southampton

Yan Valery made his first-team breakthrough at Southampton during the 2018-19 season, having joined the Saints from French outfit Rennes as a youngster. The 21-year-old caught the eye with some sparkling displays in his debut campaign, earning rave reviews for his quick development. 

After starting as many as 20 PL fixtures for Southampton in 2018-19, Valery suffered a significant fall from grace last term. The young right-back struggled with injuries and failed to break into the starting eleven even when fit. The arrival of Kyle Walker-Peters pushed him further down the pecking order.

As a result, Valery managed just 10 league starts for the Saints in the previous campaign and his struggle for regular playtime has intensified even more this term. Walker-Peters has established himself as the undisputed first-choice right-back under Hasenhuttl. 

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SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND – JUNE 25: Eddie Nketiah of Arsenal shoots during the Premier League match between Southampton FC and Arsenal FC at St Mary’s Stadium on June 25, 2020, in Southampton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

The former France U-18 international was recently handed his first league start of the season in Southampton’s 3-1 defeat against Arsenal. With just four first-team appearances under his belt, Valery has plenty to prove between now and the end of the season.

Valery could have a big part to play

It’s true that Valery has pretty much been a peripheral figure in Hasenhuttl’s set-up this season. But with Walker-Peters suffering a thigh injury and ruled out for an indefinite period, the Frenchman will surely have his opportunities to impress the manager heading into a hectic second half of the campaign.

Walker-Peters’ injury means that Southampton are no longer in a position to consider any loan offers for Valery now. The youngster is currently the only recognised back-up in the right-back position, meaning the Saints will surely need to rely on him to deliver the goods. 

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Southampton’s French defender Yan Valery (L) vies with Liverpool’s Scottish defender Andrew Robertson (R) during the English Premier League football match between Southampton and Liverpool at St Mary’s Stadium in Southampton, southern England on January 4, 2021. (Getty Images)

Southampton should look to try and get the best out of Valery in the coming months. He still has a lot to learn but has shown in the past that he’s capable of playing regularly at this level. The 21-year-old clearly has a lot of potential and the injury to Walker-Peters presents an excellent window of opportunity for him to get his career back on track.