Erik ten Hag insists he is happy to have Harry Maguire among his options at Manchester United after the defender’s move to West Ham collapsed.
Maguire had been expected to sign for West Ham after the Red Devils accepted a £30m offer for the former club captain, but the move failed to materialise with David Moyes’ side having since moved on to alternative targets.
Maguire started just eight fixtures in the Premier League last season and faces an uncertain future, but Ten Hag, speaking ahead of this weekend’s clash with Tottenham, insists he is pleased to have the 30-year-old as an option in his squad.
“Well, that process, that’s what I don’t know. Only Harry is a player from us, I’m happy he’s here,” Ten Hag said at his pre-match press conference on Maguire’s failed move.
“So, we need a good squad. We have four good centre-halves, even with Luke Shaw if you count him we have five, and we need that because we’re going to play 50 or 60 games this season.
“All the players are internationals, so we have a lot of load to cover. So, I’m very happy Harry Maguire is here. He has to fight for his position, as [does] everyone in the squad. So, we construct a squad with the double positions, but we need it.”
Ten Hag was asked what Maguire needs to do to earn a place in his team and insisted that the England international has the ‘abilities’ to meet his defensive demands.
“I think I’m now for one year here. You know what I expect from a centre-half and he can do it. I told you many times before he has the abilities to do it, so now he has to show it. It’s about character, to be convinced to play that role. He has all the abilities to do it, and it’s up to him when the time is there.”