KEVIN THOMSON has backed Nathan Patterson to make the most of his opportunity with Scotland - just like he did during his breakthrough season at Rangers.

Patterson earned himself a place in Steve Clarke's squad for the European Championships after a series of eye-catching performances in the Premiership and Europa League this term.

The 19-year-old has long been tipped for a bright future in the game and Thomson - the former Auchenhowie youth coach who is now manager of Kelty Hearts - knows Patterson has all the attributes to take him to the very top.

Glasgow Times: Nathan Patterson

Thomson told the Essential Scottish Football Podcast: "I had Nathan at 18s with Davie McCallum and I will always sit here and say that it was our job to help these players develop.

"I don’t want any pat on the back for Nathan. I only came across him for a limited time within the Academy.

"He is a great boy, he was another one that sent me a nice message [when I got the Kelty job]. You appreciate them, they appreciate you.

"I am just desperate for the boys to do well. Delighted for him.

"He is a serious talent. I did, two or three years ago, tell everyone that he was like a young Alan Hutton and Steven Whittaker.

"He got a wee bit of luck, which every young player needs, and we got that ourselves at Hibs when we got our opportunity. You have to grasp that opportunity and be good enough to stay there.

Glasgow Times: Nathan Patterson celebrates against Antwerp

"You sometimes need a bit of rub of the green or luck and he got that with Tav getting injured. He is a difficult one to try and push out with how great a season he had.

"He has went in and went from strength to strength to strength to strength. I think a lot of people will be excited to see where his journey can take him and I, if anyone, am his biggest fan."