England manager Gareth Southgate heaps praise on Harry Maguire

England manager Gareth Southgate has praised the qualities of Harry Maguire ahead of the Three Lions friendly against Switzerland at the King Power Stadium. The Leicester City centre-back has been a huge revelation for the national team since making his debut last year and Southgate believes the 25-year-old is one of the best in the business at the moment.

Speaking to reporters, he said: “I was first and foremost delighted he was fit and available. The reason for that being when I was watching him during last season I knew that on the biggest stage he’d be able to perform and excel.I was so pleased he was going to have the opportunity to do that and he delivered.He’s a superb defender, he’s really effective in both penalty boxes and the way that he brings the ball forward and can use the ball is as good as anything in Europe, in my opinion.”

Maguire was only a spectator during the European Championship in France two years ago but he has since made a huge impression on Southgate after impressing both Hull City and Leicester City in the top-flight. Aside from his defensive play, Maguire has also proved a threat from set-pieces and his ability to regularly make contact with incoming deliveries has been one of his main strengths.

As a result of his progress, Maguire was heavily linked with a probable move to Manchester United during the recent transfer window but the defender has now put the speculation to bed by penning a fresh five-year contract with the Foxes. When quizzed on the same story, Maguire stressed that he had never thought of leaving the Foxes in the first place and he is grateful to what the club have done for him over the past 15 months or so.