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Oct 20, 2013

Nantes boss hails Alejandro Bedoya

Even before Alejandro Bedoya scored the winning goal for Nantes on Saturday, his manager Michel Der Zakarian was praising his American midfielder.

McIntyre: Bedoya raising his game for U.S.

With just three minutes remaining Saturday, Filip Djordjevic's delivery landed at the feet of Bedoya, who was left with the simplest of finishes at the far post to steal a 1-0 win at Ajaccio.

Alejandro Bedoya, center, celebrates with his Nantes teammates after scoring the winning goal Saturday.

In comments published on Ligue1.com on Saturday, Der Zakarian told BeIn Sport this week that he is happy with the 26-year-old Bedoya, who joined Nantes from Helsingborg in Sweden this summer.

"He's settled in very well," Der Zakarian said. "He is technically excellent and is also prepared to work for the good of the team. His movement is always intelligent and he makes the right decisions."

Nantes, who were promoted to the top flight last season, have surged to fourth place in the Ligue 1 table after winning their past four games, and Bedoya has found himself a fan favorite.

"I'd say I'm pretty satisfied with the way things are going so far," Bedoya told BeIn. "It's been a bit hectic, my transition over here, in terms of a lot of games. My first start came against PSG. What better way to start off my campaign here?"

Der Zakarian has placed the versatile Bedoya in four positions in his first six matches -- on the right, left, in central midfield and as a right wing-back -- but the Nantes boss said Bedoya's best position is behind the striker.

"At the moment he's competing for the central role with Jordan Veretout," Der Zakarian said. He's also good on the right, which is where he plays for his country."

Bedoya was one of the final cuts to the United States' World Cup squad in 2010, but has been a fixture for the U.S. in recent months, starting six of the U.S.'s past seven games as the Americans secured qualification for next year's World Cup in Brazil.

"Alejandro Bedoya, the last couple of months, has just really come along tremendously well," U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann said after Bedoya set up Graham Zusi's game winner Oct. 11 against Jamaica.

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