Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer urged to make one signing because of Harry Maguire
Manchester United need to sign a top centre-back to get the best out of club captain Harry Maguire, according to former Tottenham striker Darren Bent. Maguire has had a solid first season at United since his £80million arrival from Leicester City last summer. The England international was appointed skipper in January following the exit of Ashley Young.
Bent believes Maguire has received some unfair criticism due to his price tag being similar to Liverpool star Virgil van Dijk.
But he says a quality addition alongside Maguire would benefit both the player and United.
“A lot of people have said he’s not lived up to the expectation of £80m,” Bent told talkSPORT.
“What it is is he went for £80m and Van Dijk went for £75m.
“And when you look at what you got Van Dijk for, £75m, you’re talking about arguably the best centre-half in the world.
“He’s completely transformed Liverpool to what they are now. Maguire might not ever get to that level that Van Dijk’s at.
“I think he’s been okay this season, I wouldn’t say he’s set the world alight.
“There’s been times this season where he has made mistakes or he hasn’t defended well.
“I don’t think he defended particularly well [against Sevilla] but I do still think that he’s got a lot to offer.
“I do still think he’s a very good centre-half and I do think if you put someone alongside him who can equally defend and they’re on the same wavelength, then I think Manchester United will be better.”
Victor Lindelof has been Maguire’s regular centre-back partner this season.
Former United striker Louis Saha likes Lindelof but says the club should target Napoli star Kalidou Koulibaly if they want to bring in a new defender.
“I’m a big fan of Lindelof,” Saha told the Football Index podcast.
“He made a mistake against Sevilla, but otherwise I think he has been very consistent and a good partner for Harry Maguire this season.
“If Manchester United are to look at a new central defender, Koulibaly is the obvious choice. I’m a big fan of his as he’s so strong and composed. He’s also an aerial threat in the opposition box.
“The more players of his stature at Old Trafford, the better.”