Home ยป Rio Ferdinand says Harry Maguire has proved his critics wrong after England heroics

Rio Ferdinand says Harry Maguire has proved his critics wrong after England heroics

by Derick Kinoti

Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has heaped praise on Harry Maguire for proving his critics wrong.

Going into the World Cup, there was a lot of scrutiny on Maguire following a run of poor performances for United going back months.

Nevertheless, Gareth Southgate chose to have faith in his trusted lieutenant and Maguire has so far more than repaid the England boss.

Ferdinand wrote for the BBC on Maguire proving his critics wrong, saying “He [Maguire] came to this World Cup with his international place under scrutiny too, but any doubts I had about whether he should be playing for England in Qatar were answered straight away.”

Ferdinand referenced the Iran game, in which Maguire was excellent, as a pivotal moment for the United man. He was brilliant and even registered an assist to his name.

Ferdinand opined for BBC, “He made a positive start, got on the ball and got some belief back – and he has kept on building his confidence in every game since then.”

“He was our best player against the United States when he showed what an excellent defender he is when the ball comes into our box, and looked extremely composed against Wales too.”

The six-time Premier League winner explored why Maguire seems to be a different player for club and country. Ferdinand attributed this to the different styles of play taken by Southgate and Erik ten Hag.

While Southgate prefers defending in a low block where Maguire is surrounded by other players, for United Ten Hag requires his centre-backs to defend extremely high up the pitch, leaving lots of space behind.

Maguire’s lack of pace and inability to recover and defend large spaces render him a liability for Ten Hag. Under Southgate, he does less defending and when required to do so, has the advantage of shutting out confined spaces.

Another reason for Maguire’s England resurgence as per Ferdinand is the fact that he feels wanted by Southgate in comparison to Ten Hag.

Southgate has made Maguire feel important and a key member of the England setup. Ferdinand suggested that this is something Ten Hag has not necessarily given to the United skipper.

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