Former Manchester United midfielder Luke Chadwick has suggested that Harry Maguire isn’t responding too well to being the club captain after his recent poor form.
The England international was a big-money signing for Man Utd from Leicester City in the summer of 2019, and it wasn’t too long after his arrival that he was given the captain’s armband by manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Many Red Devils fans may well be concerned now that the role isn’t right for Maguire, and that seems to be the view Chadwick holds.
Speaking exclusively to CaughtOffside, Chadwick made it clear that the pressure of being the team’s leader is weighing Maguire down, as he lacks that same spark as a captain as club legends like Roy Keane.
“This team is a long way off what it was in terms of the mentality, that winning habit,” Chadwick told CaughtOffside. “The weight and expectation of the captain’s armband at the biggest club in the world is maybe weighing Maguire down, it seems to be affecting him and his form.
“You saw when he came out and spoke after the Liverpool game he seemed so deflated, which I’m sure he was, but he’s maybe not got that spark about him that the captains of the past, Roy Keane, Steve Bruce … not quite that same character. He’s obviously a very gifted footballer, but there’s a personality in the squad that seems to be lacking.”
Chadwick was generally dismayed by how United’s game against Manchester City went, admitting that in the end ‘only’ losing 2-0 had to be taken as a positive.
“It was another really dour performance from the moment the game kicked off,” Chadwick said. “United fans might’ve thought this could be a turning point, but they just looked so far behind Man City in terms of the way they play, they didn’t really have a sniff the whole game.
“The only positive really is that it was only 2-0 because it could’ve been something similar to the Liverpool game. United tried to drop off and play with a lower block and tried to play City on the counter attack, but they barely had a kick of the ball. It was disappointing but not all that surprising given what we’ve seen this season.
“It was a huge pressure game, especially on the back of the last home league game against Liverpool. You could sense the tension, and it felt like the fans would’ve taken a draw.
“The games coming up are all massive now, but it’s hard to get a run of results going. Whenever they play one of the best teams in the league they look like they’re going to struggle to get a result.”