Nemanja Vidic paves the way for Harry Maguire to become a top defender

Wed 07 July 2021 | 9:45

Former Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic believes Harry Maguire must lift cups if he is to be considered a top centre-back.


Harry Maguire looks confident and comfortable, even more for his country than for Manchester United,"

Vidic wrote in The Athletic.

"He’s a defender who is still improving, but if he wants to be recognised at the highest level he has to win trophies. When I look at Maguire I see a defender who is good at everything, 8/10 at everything.

"He’s not as good on the ball or as fast as Rio Ferdinand was for example, and he doesn’t tackle or head like I did, but he has quality across his game. He’s fast enough, he’s strong enough, he can jump and play the ball, his positioning is fine."

Vidic also went on to describe Luke Shaw's brilliant performance at Euro 2020:

"Shaw came to United just after I left. He has suffered from injuries but was one of United’s best players last season


"We always knew Shaw was dangerous in attack but he’s improved a lot defensively, especially his positioning and especially when his team play three at the back."

Maguire and Shaw will win the first trophy of an important tournament with the national team if they win Euro 2020. Vidic believes that if this happens, other championships will follow.


England have now reached the semi-finals of their past two major tournaments. I’m getting used to seeing England at this stage now, comfortable at the highest level. This wasn’t always so

," he said.

"At Manchester United, I used to joke with my England team-mates that they were always expected to do well but never did, despite having all those great players.

"We’d joke before the tournaments but not after, when England were knocked out again. That was not a time for laughing. And I couldn’t say too much because I was not returning with a World Cup winner’s medal or European champion medal in my pocket from playing with Serbia.

"Winning trophies is what the best players do and trophies improve players. At United, we did not win a trophy for a couple of years before 2006. The players were really nervous until we won the League Cup.

"They said: 'We have to win'. Once we did win, the confidence and energy changed. We relaxed; we knew how to win. We didn’t stop winning: League Cup in 2006, Premier League in 2007, 2008 and 2009, Champions League and World Club Cup in 2008. Those players could now perform in the biggest matches because they were used to it.

"We grew in all these different ways and England can do the same."



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