The dark cloud following harry Maguire is getting bigger and bigger… it’s worrying England keep picking him


THERE will come a time when things start going right for Harry Maguire.

But that does not look like happening any time soon.

GettyHarry Maguire scored an own goal against Scotland[/caption]

Maguire’s nightmare spell went on against ScotlandRex

Right now, the cloud which is permanently following the beleaguered centre-half around is just getting bigger.

His own goal, 22 minutes after arriving as a half-time substitute, gave the fans more ammo to throw at Gareth Southgate for picking him.

The Manchester United defender must feel as though he is cursed.

He failed to get the move he wanted in the summer to West Ham, although it could be argued that some of that was his own fault due to financial wrangling.

On the one occasion he appeared as a sub for United, at Arsenal, everything went belly up and they were whipped 3-1 late on.

And now, on the back of mounting criticism of being selected, he managed to divert Andy Robertson’s cross into his own net.

He played well enough against Ukraine in Saturday’s 1-1 draw but his error here, where he stuck out a lazy leg, smacked of a player who is rusty. Something has to change.

Yet this is why the situation with England, where he remains in Southgate’s first XI plans, is a huge worry.


The manager, although he will deny it, will be extremely concerned by the situation surrounding a player who has served him so well.

Other than that, Southgate will have been happy with this decent win.

Despite his team sleepwalking their way to Euro 2024, Southgate knows a large section of England fans, however harsh it may seem, are still ready to turn on him.

A poor result in Glasgow, on the back of the Ukraine match, would have seen a tide of negativity flooding back his way.

Right now, the cloud which is permanently following the beleaguered centre-half around is just getting bigger.

Equally, he will still be  getting stick for bringing on Maguire at half-time for Marc Guehi.

Sensibly, Southgate took no chances and went strong with A-listers Harry Kane, Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice all starting.

He was rewarded with a strong, thumping performance which certainly quieted the locals here  in Mount Florida, although Maguire’s own goal increased the decibel level for a period. England do have some generational talents.

Here was the proof the national team does not have quite the strength in depth many would have you believe.

There is the problem of Jordan Henderson playing in Saudi Arabia and Maguire’s car crash of a season.

PAMaguire deflected Andy Robertson’s cross past Aaron Ramsdale[/caption]

GettyAnd he looked like he wanted the ground to swallow him up[/caption]

And the problem is central midfield, along with the middle of defence, are two areas that are relatively weak.

Kalvin Phillips made only his second appearance of the season following a brief  run-out as an 84th-minute sub for Manchester City against Fulham ten days earlier.

Wanting to assess his  midfield options, Southgate was still cursing the fact Trent Alexander-Arnold was unavailable after a decent two-game trial this summer.

John Stones, Luke Shaw, Jack Grealish and Mason Mount were the other injuries, which also meant the subs’ bench looked a bit thin.

Raheem Sterling and James Ward-Prowse would have been sitting at home, watching on TV, really cheesed off.

And the lack of experience in central defence was illustrated by the fact Lewis Dunk and Guehi went into the game with just six caps between them. Aaron Ramsdale, in just his fourth appearance for his country, had no chance with the own goal.

England do not have a super-strong line- up of keepers —  the same applies to strikers.

We are doomed if anything happens to Kane, who struck a fine goal to put the game beyond Scotland’s reach.

Bayern Munich will probably not have been too impressed that he played 84 minutes as he has  a game against Bayer Leverkusen on Friday.

So, while there were plenty of positives for Southgate, there was a huge negative, namely Maguire.

England fans, as always, continued to chant his name.

But the fact the Tartan Army gave ironic cheers every time he touched the ball gives you an idea of the pressure on him.

And the problem is it is unlikely to get better any time soon.

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