Earlier today, we covered a story from Sky Sports News which claimed that Manchester United were set to go head-to-head in an effort to sign Harry Maguire from Leicester City.
Immediately, question marks were raised from sections of the Old Trafford fanbase. People were baulking at The Foxes’ reported £80million price-tag on Maguire. Honestly, who cares? It’s not coming out of my pocket and I just want to see this club move in the right direction.
Anyway, back to the matter-at-hand. United’s defence was as leaky as I can remember last season, shipping 54 league goals in total. For a side that holds major trophy aspirations year-in-year-out, that’s just nowhere near good enough.
For about a half-decade United have placed their trust in the injury-prone Phil Jones and the ever-inconsistent Chris Smalling. This is where my campaign for signing ‘Slabhead’ begins. Maguire has a pretty good record in terms of remaining fit throughout the season. Reliability starts with availability. Getting yourself out on the field come kick-off time is huge, perhaps even more so as a defender as it’s a position built largely upon maintaining an almost telepathic relationship with the man next to you.
It seems as though United have found themselves a pretty decent player in Victor Lindelof. Now, Edward Woodward just needs to go out there and find the perfect partner. Enter Maguire.
In terms of sheer ability and talent, you’re kidding only yourself if you don’t believe Maguire would immediately become our best centre-half. I’m not saying he’s going to have the Virgil van Dijk effect but he is a huge upgrade on what’s available to Solskjaer right now.
You look at the ability to remain calm and pass it out from the back, his aerial presence in both penalty boxes, the toughness in the tackle and the brilliance when it comes to positioning. What’s there not to like? Plus he’s English and would count towards the homegrown quota…
Next up is his leadership skills. Seriously, go through that squad man-by-man and I dare you to pick out a player who can take command and baulk orders at his teammates when things aren’t going well. That dressing room is filled with spineless individuals, there’s no Roy Keane anywhere in sight. Maguire, again, doesn’t mind getting stuck into his players in an effort to spur them on.
Still not sold? Well, it’s as simple as this – he’s just by far and away better than every defender at United right now. For a club with such size and stature, £80million is a drop in the ocean. Pay what it takes, get the deal done and tell Maguire to bring his pal James Maddison along for the ride, too.
I guess the only issue is that City could be interested. If they firm their keenness on Maguire up with an official bid, that could seriously hamper Solskjaer’s plans, so Edward Woodward needs to act quickly and pay whatever it takes.