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Gary Neville says Harry Maguire was ‘miles off it’ in Leicester City defeat but defends Manchester United skipper


The defender had missed the last three weeks with an injury (Pictures: Instagram / Getty)

Gary Neville says Harry Maguire was ‘nowhere near ready’ to play in Manchester United’s defeat to Leicester City but has defended the skipper and insists he is still a top-quality player.

The Red Devils lost 4-2 at the King Power Stadium on Saturday and looked shambolic at the back with Maguire in particular struggling as he gifted possession to the home side before Youri Tielemans’ equaliser.

But the centre-back had hardly trained prior to the match after three weeks on the sidelines with an injury and was rushed back into the starting XI due to the absence of Raphael Varane.

United struggled at the back and shipped four goals (Picture: Getty)

While Neville acknowledged that Maguire did not have his best game for the club, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s gamble backfiring, he is adamant the England international remains a crucial part of the side going forward.

‘Maguire is overrated? No, Maguire is a fantastic player,’ said United legend Neville during an Instagram Live on Sunday morning as he was inundated with questions and comments from disgruntled fans.

‘Maguire wasn’t ready yesterday, he was nowhere near being ready for that match. I think he was thrust back in because of Varane’s injury. Maguire was well off it yesterday.

‘But I think he’s the right type, Manchester United need more like him. Maguire’s not good enough? We’re on the wrong path here if we’re now starting to say Harry Maguire is not the right type of signing.

‘I think Harry Maguire is the perfect type of character for United. I think he’s performed well since he’s come to the club.

Former Leicester man Maguire did not get the homecoming he wanted (Getty)

‘Yesterday he was miles off it, he was nowhere near at the level in terms of fitness-wise and we’ve all been there as players. But this is certainly not the time to start throwing the baby out with the bath water.’

Defending his decision to pick Maguire, Solskjaer said after the game: ‘It was my decision to play Harry. He’s worked really hard on the rehab with the physios and he looked ready, he didn’t feel any after-effects, he trained with us, he looked sharp.

‘He’s a big, massive player for us, he’s so important, he’s the captain, he’s the leader, we wanna bring him back as soon as we can because he’s been so influential in our play.’


MORE :
Gary Neville explains why Manchester United will not replace Ole Gunnar Solskjaer with Antonio Conte


MORE : ‘We need to change!’ – Paul Pogba sends damning message to Manchester United teammates following Leicester defeat

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