Manchester City starlet Jack Byrne can be a 'top player', says King

The Ireland Under-21 boss has tipped the Manchester City teenager to be a success, claiming Byrne can continue improving for club and country

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Republic of Ireland Under-21 manager Noel King has praised Manchester City midfielder Jack Byrne, suggesting that the 19-year-old has what it takes to be a 'top player'.

Byrne has impressed on loan at Dutch side Cambuur, scoring three goals for the Eredivisie club in 22 league appearances and his form in the Netherlands earned him a chance to train with the senior Ireland team ahead of their friendlies against Switzerland and Slovakia.

He returned to the U-21 setup for their European Championship qualifier with Italy on Thursday, and created the opening goal with an accurate free-kick.

Despite the Boys in Green eventually suffering a 4-1 defeat, King believes that Byrne's confidence will not suffer a setback, allowing him to continue his development.

"I think Jack has done some nice things on the ball, everybody can see that, he's a talent," King told Goal.

"There's a lot of publicity surrounding him, maybe that'll make things more difficult for him. He has a chance to be a top player and make a career for himself. Hopefully he'll continue developing and can continue improving."

Martin O'Neill commented on the midfielder's confidence during the first training session with the senior team on Monday and the former Celtic boss was in attendance at the Regional Sports Centre for the clash against Italy.

King is confident Byrne and some of his teammates will have done enough to catch the eye of the Derry native.

"I think it's always good to see what you have underneath," said the former Finn Harps and Derry City manager.

"When you go to see your reserve team, which technically it is, you'll always see one or two things that you like and a couple of things you don't like.

"He's a smart man, Martin, and an experienced campaigner, so I'm sure he'll pick the bits and pieces out of that."