Christian Fuchs has no doubt that former Leicester City team-mate Harry Maguire will overcome his recent on and off-field bouts prove to be a « great signing » for Manchester United.
Maguire’s talent has come under intense scrutiny since last year he traded King Power Stadium for Old Trafford for £ 80m ($ 104m) – a world record fee for a defender.
The England international had a solid first season at United but his form has been poor that season, drawing heavy criticism from prominent experts, while he was also embroiled in an ongoing legal battle with the Greek authorities after being charged with serious assault convicted and resisted arrest and attempted bribe by a court in Syros in August.
Maguire has received a suspended sentence before his lawyers appealed the original verdict and the matter remains unsolved.
However, Fuchs believes the 27-year-old will survive this difficult period and once again prove himself to be one of the best central defenders in the world.
« You can only know what’s going on when you’re really behind closed doors, » the Austrian told Goal . « Nobody has these insights, but the way I saw Harry when he was here was that he always tries his best to perform well.
« Sometimes you want to try to be your best, but it just doesn’t work the way everyone wants it to. Not just the player or the fans, but everyone.
« I’m sure he’s strong enough to take this off. He was a great signing for Leicester and will be for Manchester United. I am sure he will do his best again.
« When you are the last line of defense, it is easy for people to point their fingers at you. Defending, like attacking, is a team effort, so it should be seen that way. «
Maguire’s departure was a blow to Leicester, as was Ben Chilwell’s move to Chelsea in the summer.
However, Fuchs believes that the Foxes, who narrowly missed the top 4 finish in the Premier League last season, deserve the way they responded to those setbacks, and they argue That manager Brendan Rodgers and senior recruiter Lee Congerton did an excellent job replacing the English duo.
Leicester is high on the list ahead of the trip to Liverpool on Sunday. Signings like Wesley Fofana, Timothy Castagne and Cengiz Under have all contributed to the team’s fantastic start to the 2020-21 season.
« Leicester has to have good scouting because we always hire the right players! » Fuchs enthused.
« The manager has precise ideas about the right player profile and how he sees the development of the squad. The players we sign also have to be ready as they get thrown [into the first team] quickly.
« Leicester is known to have come up with the right answers to the problems caused by the Chilwell and Maguire eliminations by involving younger players or relying on seasoned players who were already at the club.
« It happened for [Caglar] Soyuncu last season. Fofana already looks like a seasoned player who has played five or six seasons in the Premier League and that’s amazing.
« But it’s also about the manager giving these players the confidence to do something like this. He gives them the confidence you need to build on the skills you already have.
« Brendan has pros like Jamie Vardy who are good with himself, but at the same time we’ve seen him switch teams between Premier League and European games.
« We have players who can play in many different positions. You can play full-back, center-back, and other roles within a game. We are all variable in our game, so it can be difficult for our opponents to adapt.
« I think we took a big step in our development as a team last year and although we didn’t play as well as we should have done at the end of the season, we looked at it this year.
« Now the key is consistency to keep working at the highest level throughout the season. «
In addition to playing a role in Leicester’s good shape, Fox is doing his best to connect with the club’s fans at a time that is difficult for everyone due to the pandemic.
The 34-year-old runs his own social media accounts, a charitable foundation and an eSports company.
So it’s no wonder that Fuchs was too keen to register when BAST, an innovative celebrity gaming platform, invited him to compete against the public at a FIFA 21 charity event.
« I think through projects like BAST people see that I’m very social with fans, » he added. « It’s very authentic; only I post and interact. Being a footballer means more than just playing the game.
« We are in a different situation and it is difficult to deal with the situation both in Leicester and everywhere. When people are forced to stay home, it’s cool to have fans who connect in person with players and give joy and hope to others.
« I will play FIFA fans for the Leicester City Foundation so I am excited to play a small role in handling this difficult scenario. «
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