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Clyne: 'Saints will fight for top four spot'

Nathaniel Clyne has warned Southampton's top-four rivals the Saints are ready to fight for a Champions League spot.

The England defender is confident they can maintain their challenge ahead of Sunday's clash with Manchester City at St Mary's.

Clyne scored in the Saints' 1-1 draw at Aston Villa on Monday as they extended their unbeaten run to six games.

They have lost just once in their last 14 outings in all competitions and sit second in the Premier League, six points behind Chelsea.

They face City, Arsenal and Manchester United in their next three games and Clyne is out to prove they have staying power.

He said: "We've got to be mentally prepared and focused for these games and we're going in there confidently.

"We're underdogs and we're going to show how good we are and put in another fight and try and get the points that we're looking for. We're buzzing for it. There are big games coming up thick and fast."

Clyne's goal capped a fine few days for the 23-year-old after he made his first two England appearances against Slovenia and Scotland.

He said: "It's been a great week for me. Going away with the international team, and getting my first and second cap. I'm happy with the way my career's progressing and going, and hopefully I can get better and be the best player I can be.

"It makes me more confident. It makes me into a better player. I feel more like a leader here, so I've got to show my experience and earn the progression and help out the team."

But the right-back was frustrated after Southampton failed to beat struggling Villa despite dominating most of the game.

Fraser Forster's mistake allowed Gabby Agbonlahor to score the opener before Clyne's 81st minute leveller.

He said: "We're happy with the point, and we'll take it."