This winter’s World Cup will start in just eight days and many Manchester United players will be taking part in the tournament.
Gareth Southgate revealed his 26-man squad for their trip to Qatar earlier this week and three Manchester United players were included – Luke Shaw, Harry Maguire and Marcus Rashford.
There were question marks over all three players at the start of the season and there were calls for Southgate to drop Maguire from the squad despite the 29-year-old playing a key role in both most recent tournaments.
Speaking after the team’s revelation, Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira has now hit out at the media for showing a ‘disrespect’ to Maguire.
“I think sometimes you (the media) disrespect Maguire and some of the players who have been selected for the national team,” Vieira is quoted as saying by Athleticism.
“Maguire is a top player who has a very strong character. Sometimes you can play well and sometimes you can play badly, but that doesn’t take away from his quality and personality.
“The England national team will benefit.”
Crystal Palace defender Marc Guehi bowed out in England this year but was not called up by Southgate. Vieira also commented on his omission, saying Maguire’s experience at international level is what sets him apart.
“Regarding Marc, what he had to do is stay consistent with his performance” Viera said. “Marc, if you compare him to Maguire, the difference is that Maguire knows things at this international level that Marc doesn’t know yet.”
It’s clear that Maguire is one of Southgate’s trusted lieutenants and despite his shaky form, he will always have the chance to play for his nation.
In truth, Maguire’s performances for England have always been impressive. It’s unlikely England would have reached the EURO 2020 final without him.
At club level, it’s not as promising for Maguire. Raphael Varane’s untimely injury gave him hope but Victor Lindelof was preferred by Ten Hag.