EPL

Maguire 'under more scrutiny' at Manchester United as defender thrives on World Cup stage

By Sports Desk December 07, 2022

Harry Maguire feels he is "under a lot more scrutiny" with Manchester United than England, as the centre-back continues to impress at the World Cup.

The Red Devils skipper has been a standout performer for Gareth Southgate's side at Qatar 2022, starting all four of their games to date and helping them to three clean sheets.

It makes a marked contrast for the defender, who has struggled at club level over the past season-and-a-half, and has been deposed as a first-choice pick under new boss Erik ten Hag amid an injury layoff.

Maguire himself has few complaints, acknowledging United were well under-par last term, and said he feels he is under the microscope more at Old Trafford than with the Three Lions.

"At Manchester United, I'm under a lot more scrutiny," he added. "Everything I do gets analysed. Every pass I make gets analysed. Every goal we concede is a defender's fault.

"If you're playing week in, week out as I did for three years, the last year hasn't been good enough. Everyone in the team didn't play well enough, and we came under a lot of scrutiny as players."

Under Ten Hag however, United have overcome a shaky start - and the saga of Cristiano Ronaldo - to head into the World Cup break looking close to their best for two years.

Maguire is delighted to see the turnaround, even if he is down the pecking order, and is relishing the chance to battle to get back into the Dutchman's thinking.

"No one came out of the season with plaudits, so it was a general team issue last season, but this one has been much better," he added.

"This is the first year I've really sat on a bench in a few games. I obviously got an injury as well, a thigh injury that kept me out for four weeks, but I'll fight to get my place back."

Maguire will be expected to line up when England face off with defending champions France in the World Cup quarter-finals on Saturday.

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