USA boss Jurgen Klinsmann gives his verdict on DeAndre Yedlin's Sunderland stint

The Tottenham Hotspur defender made 25 total appearances on loan at the Stadium of Light this past season.

US national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has spoken of his delight with DeAndre Yedlin’s progress during his season-long loan spell at Sunderland.

Yedlin joined Sunderland on loan from Tottenham Hotspur last September after struggling for first-team opportunities at White Hart Lane and went on to make 25 total appearances for the Black Cats, recording two assists.

The 22-year-old American right-back initially found himself behind Billy Jones in the pecking order but managed to break into the line-up over the second half of the season to start the club’s final 13 Premier League games, helping them avoid relegation with a match to spare.

His time with Sam Allardyce’s side saw him make big strides forward defensively after being better known as an attack-minded full-back, and the promising speedster’s national team boss has declared his stint on Wearside a raving success.

Asked in a Facebook Q&A session earlier this week about Yedlin’s Sunderland spell, Klinsmann said: “We’re thrilled about his season because he broke through at Sunderland and Sunderland’s not an easy spot to play at, especially when they’re fighting relegation.

“I think for DeAndre this was a big learning year and made him stronger, made him better and hopefully also more confident. With what he’s going through, he’s still a very young player and it couldn’t have gone any better during the season.

“Most importantly, Sunderland were not relegated. They saved themselves and he played a vital role in that with an awesome coach, Sam Allardyce, so he gets a big confidence boost and now he has to confirm this good form at the Copa America.”

Yedlin is now expected to be the US national team’s first-choice right-back going into next month’s Copa America Centenario, but what the future holds for him back at Tottenham following the tournament remains unclear.

The 31-times capped defender, who joined Spurs from the Seattle Sounders following the 2014 MLS season, made just one 12-minute substitute appearance for Mauricio Pochettino’s side during his first eight months in England and remains unlikely to see much playing time next term as long as Kyle Walker and Kieran Trippier are still around.

Recent reports have even suggested that Pochettino would be prepared to let the Seattle native leave on a permanent basis this summer, with the Mirror claiming that Sunderland are preparing a £2 million bid to bring him back to the Stadium of Light.

Yedlin himself has stressed that he is not thinking about his club future until after the Copa America but did admit earlier this week that he would be open to returning to the North East, telling Goal USA: “It’s definitely a door I would not close. I would not mind going back [to Sunderland]. I had a great time there. I’m keeping all doors open, I don’t want to shut any right now.

“I don’t want to close any doors right now. I’ll just keep my head down and perform at Copa America. Obviously if I can have a good tournament here it’ll impress a lot more people.”

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