‘He’s needed’ – Alan Smith urges Manchester United not to get rid of Harry Maguire
Former Manchester United star Alan Smith has urged the club not to cash in Harry Maguire, insisting the defender still has an important role to play at Old Trafford.
With Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez now Erik ten Hag’s first-choice pairing at the back, the club captain has started just two league games since being dropped in the aftermath of the harrowing 4-0 defeat to Brentford in August.
With Luke Shaw also impressing in a new role at centre-half, helping keep Erling Haaland quiet in the 2-1 win over Manchester City on Sunday, Maguire is now effectively fourth choice with Victor Lindelof also vying for opportunities.
Reports have suggested the former Leicester City star could be put up for sale in the summer with West Ham enquiring into his availability on loan this month – interest that was swiftly dismissed by United.
Smith, who played for United between 2004 and 2007, says the club captain remains a great personality’ in the United dressing room, praising him for not complaining over his recent role and insisting his chances will come.
‘I’d say no,’ Smith told MrCasinova when asked if a move away from Old Trafford would benefit Maguire.
‘I think that Man United need to try and keep Maguire. From the outside looking in, I think he’s a personality that’s great in the dressing room – he wouldn’t be captain otherwise.
‘I think he’s a strong enough personality to deal with everything that he’s had to deal with.
‘I’m sure that the manager plays Luke Shaw because he gives you that left-footed balance, and left-footed centre-backs are very hard to come by.
‘The way Ten Haag likes to play, having a left-sided centre-back and left back both being left-footed gives you that balance in the team and gives you an advantage, which I think is why he’s played Shaw.
‘I’ve heard no moaning from Maguire, no criticism on him not playing, no saying that he wants to get out of United which speaks volumes of him as a character.
‘For him to be at Man United and to be the captain, speaks volumes of what he brings. I’m sure there will be times when he’s needed.’
MORE : Manchester United respond to West Ham’s Harry Maguire approach
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