Gareth Southgate showed with England what Erik ten Hag’s Man Utd are missing

Rasman Osman is in Qatar for NationalWorld covering the World Cup and he has been giving his thoughts on the 6-2 win for England over Iran.
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Manchester United star Harry Maguire was exceptional against Iran and showed that with confidence he is still England’s best defender on a day the whole world was waiting for him to falter for crazy social media memes.

The English defender, who walked off the treatment table to excel in the Euros, was again at his commanding best for his country with his passing, reading of the game and overall display of glass and ability which will delight his manager.

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He completed 89.2% of his attempted passes, won the one tackle he attempted, completed 10 of the 14 cross field passes, won four of the all the aerial duels he competed in, had one shot on target and grabbed an assist for his trouble.

A true statement performance and a reminder of why he is one of the most expensive defenders in the history of the Premier League. He was that good.

He was that good when he felt ill the bench did not want him to come off and Erik ten Hag will be watching as he’s got the skill set that will be needed if United are to go on and excel in all competitions.

Unlucky not have given England the opening goal

The signs were very good for the United defender early on and he should have given England the first goal after his towering header came off the crossbar. Incredibly unlucky there as it would have been a story for the most maligned player coming into the World Cup getting the opening goal.

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That did not stop him from going on to excel. He was at the heart of everything good defensively whether it be covering for Kieran Trippier or who would almost always join the midfield to create an overload or the just starting up the build up. Gareth would have been delighted with what he did given how he got criticised for picking him even at a time he was playing for his club.

England’s Harry Maguire in action vs Iran. England’s Harry Maguire in action vs Iran.
England’s Harry Maguire in action vs Iran.

Should have won a penalty

There is no doubt in my mind that Maguire should have been awarded a penalty after he was brought down in the penalty box. Given that Iran got a penalty themselves late, compare that to the Harry Maguire incident and the Englishman definitely should have got one.

In a game where England were quite good it was Maguire who was making all the right moves and dictating the tempo of the game from midfield. Unreal performance.

Offered set piece threat at every time and defended aerially

He was the first to every aerial ball and in his own defence and that of the opponent, proving that he could be a tool when games are tight and needing something special.

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Tournament football is one that requires the use of your best leg and the fact that he can be one who is able to give the team solidity in the air when defending and an added threat going forward.

The game against Iran truly highlights why Gareth Southgate has always maintained that it’s always better to judge the form of a player when he plays for the national team rather than just his club form.

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