Southgate advises Hughes to stay at Derby

England Under-21 manager Gareth Southgate believes Derby County’s promising young midfielder Will Hughes would be best served remaining at the Championship club, Sky Sports has reported.

Hughes has been linked with a move to the Premier League but Southgate, who professed to be a big fan of the 18-year-old, believes Hughes should stay at his current club.

“Will is a very mature boy, a sensible boy,” Southgate told the Daily Telegraph. “I think he is somebody who just loves his football.

“You can see on the field his personality comes out, he is smiling with referees and with the opposition.

“So if he is able to put everything else to one side, that is perfect. He doesn’t strike me as the type to become distracted. He is a young player who we are all very excited about.”

Hughes has played more than 70 times for the Rams, making his debut in November 2011 at the age of 16. He has made half-a-dozen appearances for England’s Under-21s and Southgate believes Hughes’ affection for Derby will see him stay for the foreseeable future.

“Will loves the club. He has been through the system and that has a big impact on your thought process,” Southgate said.

“As a young player, you always have that attachment with your first club even more than any other. I’m sure he realises, at his age, Derby County is a great place to be.”

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