Home ยป Harry Maguire extends fine form for both club and country in dominant display vs. Malta

Harry Maguire extends fine form for both club and country in dominant display vs. Malta

by Derick Kinoti

Manchester United defender Harry Maguire played all 90 minutes plus added time as England eased past Malta in a 2-0 UEFA EURO qualifier clash.

Both Maguire and United teammate Marcus Rashford were named in the starting XI by Gareth Southgate.

Unlike Maguire, Rashford could not complete the game as he had to be taken off after a nasty collision with Liverpool’s Trent-Alexander Arnold.

Rashford seemingly came off worse and it appeared like he could not continue. The 26-year-old forward was replaced by Chelsea star Cole Palmer who was making his debut for the Three Lions.

Maguire slotted next to Marc Guehi in a backline also consisting of Kieran Trippier and Fikayo Tomori.

During the time he was on the pitch, Maguire made two clearances. He also came up with one crucial interception.

The former Red Devils skipper was not required to make a tackle and was not dribbled past even on one occasion by a Malta player.

He was not required to delve into any ground duels. It was a different situation altogether in terms of aerial challenges.

Of the seven aerial duels Maguire was needed by his side to contest, he did his job to perfection and won all seven – such was his impact at the back.

The 30-year-old registered a massive 120 touches of the ball.

To highlight how involved he was in open play, the English defender attempted an incredible 114 passes. 107 of these were successful. He had an impressive 94% pass accuracy to his name.

Maguire tried to ping 10 long balls. He found his target all 10 times in what was a stunning show of his technical ability on the ball.

Finally, the United man blocked two shots.

(Stats obtained from Sofascore)

Maguire certainly proved why Erik ten Hag has a point in continuously selecting him even in the face of criticism for snubbing the more accomplished and decorated Raphael Varane.

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