Home » Gareth Southgate explains rationale behind controversial Harry Maguire call-up

Gareth Southgate explains rationale behind controversial Harry Maguire call-up

by Derick Kinoti

Manchester United will be represented by three players in the England camp that’s going to Qatar for the World Cup.

Gareth Southgate picked Harry Maguire, Marcus Rashford and Luke Shaw to be part of the travelling party.

As has been the case whenever Maguire has been picked, there’s been a huge uproar from a section of England supporters and the media for the selection of the United skipper.

Maguire lost his place in the United team with Erik ten Hag preferring a backline partnership of Lisandro Martinez and Raphael Varane.

Maguire has not featured as frequently for the Reds this season, partly due to injury and poor form. Whenever fit, however, he has had to mostly contend with a place on the bench.

This coupled with a string of mistakes the defender was culpable for both last season and this season put Southgate in a dilemma with the majority of the public firmly against the idea of calling up Maguire.

The criticism has been exacerbated by the fact that AC Milan’s Fikayo Tomori, a Serie A champion, was left out of the squad in favour of Maguire.

On his decision to persevere with the United captain, Southgate said that others such as Tomori had not done enough to warrant a spot on the plane.

He explained to the press, “We don’t think the young ones [centre-backs] have done quite enough to push the older ones out.”

“Yes, I’m sure Harry Maguire is one of our best centre-backs.”

There are not many who will agree with Southgate’s assessment that Maguire is one of the country’s best defensively.

Nevertheless, the 29-year-old has been largely faultless in an England shirt and was crucial to helping the Three Lions get to the final in the Euros.

Hopefully, Maguire can repay Southgate’s immense faith in him and help the team achieve something meaningful in Qatar.

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