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Hoddle hails 'best in the world' Ward-Prowse: Ideal for Tottenham or ambitious Everton

Former Southampton boss Glenn Hoddle can see Saints captain James Ward-Prowse moving to a bigger stage - and is convinced the midfielder would improve the majority of teams in the Premier League, including Manchester United and Jose Mourinho's Tottenham.

Ward-Prowse, now 26, has come right through the Saints academy system and was named club captain following the sale of Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg to Tottenham this past summer. And while the England international only signed a new contract to 2025 in August, Hoddle can see Ward-Prowse being targeted by bigger clubs, particularly those with ambitions of silverware.

Discussing the January market ahead on his podcast, 'The Glenn Hoddle Footy Show', Hoddle said, "I think the lad Ward-Prowse would be beneficial for several of the top, top teams. He's a terrific player and he's going to get better and better. With his set play ability he could surprise many, many people if he went to a top, top club."

Indeed, Hoddle is confident Ward-Prowse would enhance most teams hoping to muscle in on the Premier League title chase. And the former England coach agrees with Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola's assessment of Ward-Prowse's free-kick taking ability - the Catalan declaring it the "best I've seen in my life".

For Hoddle, Ward-Prowse's ability from a dead ball is a match for David Beckham, who he managed as Three Lions coach.

He continued: "I've been saying that for a long time. He's up there with David Beckham. Beckham was fantastic.

"But it's not just his ability in and around the 'D', it's the corners and the wide free-kicks. He puts it on the spot nine times out of ten and that is worth it's weight in gold. If you have good attackers of the ball in the air, from corners and free-kicks, you can see the fear in the wall and the fear in the eyes of the goalkeeper."

But Hoddle also insists there's much more to Ward-Prowse's game than set-pieces - and he feels there remains a lot of potential in the midfielder to be tapped.

He continued: "I think his all round game has come on leaps and bounds. But as a set play artist, there's no-one out there in football who is better.

"He'd be a major asset for Tottenham, for instance, or he could go and play in Everton's team tomorrow. They're ambitious.

"Arsenal, Man United, he could play in any of them, in my opinion. Whether he has the mentality, you don't know until he goes to a big club. But he's been in and around the England squad, he knows what it's all about and he's grown as a player."

Listen to this week's full episode of 'The Glenn Hoddle Footy Show' - a Tribal Football partner - below:

Click here to visit the full archive of 'The Glenn Hoddle Footy Show'.

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