It’s no blight on Harry Maguire’s career to this date, but Manchester United’s final pre-season match stateside was further evidence that a move away from Old Trafford is best for both parties now. The England international appears devoid of any confidence in a United shirt at the moment and he’s been a target for supporters at matches during pre-season.
That’s only going to intensify if Maguire is still part of Ten Hag’s squad for the start of the Premier League campaign. Not only was Maguire booed by sections of supporters, he was berated by new signing Andre Onana for a mistake in the game against Borussia Dortmund.
The Cameroonian doesn’t shy away from criticising his team-mates on the pitch and his rant at Maguire may not be the last if the defender is not sold this summer. Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez will be the first choice centre-back pairing to start the campaign.
But Maguire will likely be called upon at some point if he’s a part of Ten Hag’s squad to give others a rest. United can’t afford any slip ups though and carrying a player who appears devoid of any confidence risks disrupting any rhythm Ten Hag’s side build up this year.
West Ham have been the only team to make an official approach for Maguire with the £20million bid immediately rejected. United are said to be holding out for closer to £40m for the centre-back who had his captaincy stripped from him this summer.
That asking price will undoubtedly need to be dropped for a player woefully out of form. But time is now running out for United to make a change in that department or be stuck with what they have until January.
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United have already missed out on Kim Min-jae, Axel Disasi and Jurrien Timber and their options are starting to dry up. Ten Hag has already stated that he wants his transfer activity done and dusted before the Premier League season starts in under two weeks.
And Maguire starting his first match of pre-season against Dortmund on Sunday suggests Ten Hag is resigned to the defender staying at the club. But Onana’s explosive rant at the defender was the first sign that Maguire’s position in the United squad risks upsetting the equilibrium at Old Trafford.
United made their bed when they handed Maguire’s captaincy over to Bruno Fernandes. However, not having a deal in place for Maguire to leave soon after that decision was made could come back to bite Ten Hag in spectacular fashion.
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