News Matches

Southgate insists Harry Maguire is a 'fantastic footballer' as he explains England World Cup call-up for out-of-favour Man Utd star

8:03 AM GMT 21/11/2022
Harry Maguire England 2022
Gareth Southgate has full faith in Harry Maguire, labelling him as a technically-gifted defender who is good with the ball.
  • Southgate trusts Maguire
  • Hails his technical ability
  • Maguire likely to start against Iran

WHAT HAPPENED? Despite not being a regular starter at Manchester United this season, England boss Southgate backed Maguire, pinpointing his combination of technical and physical attributes.

WHAT THEY SAID: Speaking to reporters, Southgate said: "Loyalty comes from performances over time - and knowing that to play for England is a different experience to any other. Players have to be able to handle that. The ones that have been here longer, we know they can do that. What are his strengths? Well, he's technically a fantastic footballer with the ball.

"He's a very strong leader in the team. His physical stature, the aerial challenge is one - we haven't got anybody else with that physical presence. And of course, there is the relationships with other players in the defence which are also part of your thinking when you're picking a team, because that understanding you don't have long to work on and the more those relationships are there over a period of time I think it is helpful."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Maguire has appeared in just four Premier League matches this season under Erik ten Hag but he is all but assured of a starting eleven spot in England's back four at the World Cup.


WHAT NEXT FOR ENGLAND? England kick-off their World Cup campaign on Monday against Carlos Queiroz's Iran.