This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
As quoted by Sky Sports, Harry Maguire has urged Manchester United to show some “arrogance” on the ball after another disappointing result against Southampton.
Since a stunning 4-0 victory over rivals Chelsea, the Red Devils’ form has taken a dip, and their latest draw at St Mary’s on Saturday means they have just five points from their start to the Premier League campaign.
Now, Maguire has admitted United must make vast improvements to their work on the ball if they are to get back to winning ways.
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He said: “We’re playing attacking football. Don’t get me wrong, I think we can definitely improve a lot, especially on the ball. We gave the ball away far too much, especially towards the end of the first and start of the second half.
“We were giving it away sloppy, and we need to improve on that and show arrogance on the ball and be confident on the ball. We’re Man United and we want to control games and I feel like in the last 20 of the first and the first 20 of the second we didn’t really control the game and I think we got punished for that really. Probably 15 minutes either side of half-time they’ve had the better of the play and they’ve come away with a point.”
“Show arrogance on the ball”. “We’re Man United”. What is that even supposed to mean? Paul Pogba has been the very definition of arrogance whenever he’s stepped on to the pitch with his fancy flicks and passes, and look at how that’s ended up. The Frenchman is constantly berated by his own fans and pundits alike for exactly that.
The whole “we’re Man United” thing also feels extremely outdated. Maguire appears to be clinging on to the pretence the Red Devils are still in the midst of their prime, and should be dominating games week-in and week-out. A little news flash Harry, you’re not. The fear factor has well and truly gone.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has got the right idea in trying to rebuild the club, and it starts with undergoing an attitude change. United need to take a step back, be humble and start afresh. What they don’t need is players acting as if they’re still the bees knees without proving anything.