Peter Schmeichel Says Harry Maguire Was 'Made for Manchester United'

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistAugust 15, 2019

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - AUGUST 11: Harry Maguire of Manchester United during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Chelsea FC at Old Trafford on August 11, 2019 in Manchester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images)
Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

Manchester United legend Peter Schmeichel said he could tell Harry Maguire would be a natural fit at Old Trafford when the defender was playing with Leicester City.

Maguire joined United in a world-record £80 million move from the Foxes, where he played alongside Schmeichel's son, Kasper, earlier in August.

Per the Mirror's James Nursey, the former goalkeeper said: "I have to say when I saw Harry the first time for Leicester when he played his first game, he intrigued me straight away. A couple of games in I am thinking, 'This guy is made for Manchester United.' He is not fazed about anything."

The Dane also hailed the centre-back's "incredible ability" to carry the ball out from defence:

"It is something you either have or don't have, and very few centre-halves have that ability.

"For some people, he looks a bit awkward, but I have got used to him and know exactly what he will do and think he will do very well.

"He is going to bring stability in defence. He is a very calm, cool customer. There is nothing erratic about him."

The 26-year-old's world-record fee for a defender raised more than a few eyebrows, but he enjoyed a strong start to his United career with a fine display in their 4-0 win over Chelsea on Sunday:

Manchester United @ManUtd

The man is a colossus. Plain and simple. @HarryMaguire93 #MUFC https://t.co/1DatbHRset

Sports writers Sam Pilger and Liam Canning hailed his burgeoning partnership with Victor Lindelof:

Sam Pilger @sampilger

Harry Maguire was immense at the heart of the #MUFC back four today, and alongside Victor Lindelof the club might have found their best central defensive partnership since Ferdinand and Vidic

Liam Canning @LiamPaulCanning

Harry Maguire was gargantuan today. Forgot what it felt like to have an excellent centre back partnership. As long as Maguire and Lindelof stay fit, Manchester United have that. So secure and confident on the ball.

Maguire was a commanding presence at the back for the Red Devils, showcasing not only his strength and aerial prowess but also his reading of the game with several important interceptions.

As football statistician Dave O'Brien illustrated, it was a clean performance from the England international:

Statman Dave @StatmanDave

Harry Maguire vs. Chelsea: • 0 times dribbled past • 0 fouls committed • 0 goals conceded Good first impression. 👏👏👏 https://t.co/iztj4Ysf5K

His composure on the ball will help United build from the back too.

Although he can't make up for United's failure to inject creativity into their team outside of Daniel James this summer, his ability to bring the ball into midfield should help the side forge more opportunities for their forward players.

United shipped 54 goals in the Premier League last season, a record that was bettered by the rest of their top-six rivals, as well as Wolverhampton Wanderers, Everton, Leicester City, Crystal Palace and Newcastle United.

If their performance against Chelsea is indicative of how they will continue for the season, Maguire and Lindelof's partnership, along with fellow new addition Aaron Wan-Bissaka at right-back, should help the Red Devils improve considerably on that front.

United have missed out on a place in the top four in four of the past six seasons, but Maguire's arrival will make UEFA Champions League qualification a realistic aim for this campaign.