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Outgoing Denayer keeps only the very best of Kompany . . .

HE made it clear from the moment he turned up at Celtic on loan that he did not want to be labelled the next Vincent Kompany, but Jason Denayer had better realise that he is not going to shake off the comparisons that easily.

Adam Drury, his friend and team-mate from Manchester City's elite development squad, has made sure of that after following him to Scottish football on his own season-long deal at St Mirren.

There are clear parallels to be drawn between Denayer and Kompany thanks to their shared Belgian-Congolese background, their position at centre-half and employment by the Barclays Premier League champions.

Drury insists, despite Denayer's strongest protestations, there are also clear similarities on the field between his friend and the City captain that are only going to grow as the 19-year-old develops, both physically and in footballing terms.

"When you look at his frame now, he is only going to get bigger, so he is going to become the size of the likes of Kompany," said Drury. "He will benefit from that. I would say they are similar types of players. Jason has told me that he doesn't want to be compared to Kompany and wants to be his own player and fair play to him. I think he could go on to be one of the best, from what I have seen. He can go all the way. For his age, he is very mature in the way he plays. He reads the game brilliantly and is very composed.

"I don't see why he wouldn't play for the first team at Manchester City.

"He went on the first-team tour [of the USA in the summer] and did really well. Of course, you know how quickly football can change, but I played with Jason last year and he is set for the top, in my opinion."

Drury has another of his City team-mates with him at St Mirren Park in the shape of Ellis Plummer, also signed on a 12-month loan, and they plan to arrange a night out with Denayer to swap notes on life in Scottish football over the next few weeks.

"Jason is a brilliant person," said Drury. "The best way to describe him is 'a laugh'. His English wasn't the best when he came to City at first, but he took lessons and grasped it really well. I will see how he goes and drop him a text to meet up. Ellis is up here as well and it will be good for us to have a catch-up."

Tommy Craig, the St Mirren manager, has high hopes for Drury during his time in Paisley and believes, although he was used mainly as a right-back by City last season, that he will be able to make a contribution from a number of positions.

"He's an aggressive, forward-thinking player, who can play anywhere down the right hand side," said Craig. "It's useful for a club such as ourselves to have players who can play a few positions.

"He can play in a midfield four, as a winger or as a right-back. His attitude is the thing which enables him to play in those positions.

"Players don't like being shifted about, but you get players who can do a job in a variety of areas. As long as he doesn't feel as though he's been played out of position and is happy, it's not a problem.

"I'm hoping to open up a variety of formations whether that's four at the back, three at the back or using extreme width if it's necessary."

St Mirren gained great benefit from bringing in Conor Newton and Paul Dummett on loan from Newcastle United over the past couple of seasons and hope that reinforcing their links with Manchester City this season will bring similar results.

"We have a connection with Manchester City which is similar to the one we have with Newcastle United," said Craig.

"I went down to the Etihad to look at their stadium. From that, we met one or two people and it grew from there. I watched Adam in a few Under-20 games and he struck me as one for the future."

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