After kicking off World Cup preparations with a 2-1 win over Switzerland at the weekend, the Three Lions boss made 10 changes for the friendly against Ivory Coast on Tuesday.
The former Sheffield United man receives a confidence boost from England boss Gareth South…
Under fire, former Sheffield United star and current Manchester United captain Maguire was among those brought in and was greeted with a handful of boos at Wembley, where his name received a similar reaction on Saturday.
There was even teasing at the defender’s first touches in the 3-0 win over Ivory Coast 10 – a baffling reaction that infuriated the England manager.
“I thought the reception was a joke, an absolute joke,” he told Sky Sports.
“What he did for us, the way he played for England, I don’t understand. Either we’re all together or we’re not.
Southgate not only felt Maguire’s abuse was unacceptable, but also damaging to the rest of the England squad.
“I don’t understand how this benefits anyone because either we’re all in this together or we’re not,” the England boss said on a night when Ollie Watkins, Raheem Sterling and Tyrone Mings marked for hosts.
“I imagine if you asked a few why they were doing this they might not even be able to answer because it becomes a mob mentality.
“Of course, at one end of the field we have a hardcore section of fans playing his song and trying to get his name sung, so I’m very aware that’s not everyone.
“But either we’re all in this together or we’re not, and don’t think for a minute that other players won’t look at this thinking ‘this could be me someday’.
“That’s been one of the problems with playing for England. The players thought ‘hmmm, do I want to go because when it gets a little tough the crowd will turn on me “.
“It’s happened with John Barnes here, it’s happened with Ashley Cole many times, it’s happened with Raheem, now Harry. They’re all exceptional players, so I really don’t understand how this is going to benefit anyone. a.
“We are united as a team. We need a Harry Maguire who plays well if we want to have a chance to do well (in winter) because we’re not going to win a World Cup with a bunch of players who have three or four caps.
“That hasn’t happened in the history of the game, so we need our experienced players to play well, especially in those positions on the pitch. He’s top quality. In my opinion, that’s also the his club’s best centre-back. Where it all starts or is fed from (from where), I’m not sure, but it’s ridiculous.
“It’s almost like every time he steps on a football pitch, every action is analyzed to death. I don’t remember any player having had that kind of spotlight on him at any given time.
Those feelings were shared in the dressing room, with Grealish mystified by the reaction.
“Personally, I think it’s ridiculous,” he said. “Harry was amazing for this country in the World Cup, the Euros. I think even tonight he was brilliant. Our first two goals came from him.
“The first chased him with the ball and the second comes from him driving a bit and then playing the pass to Ollie. Not all centre-backs can have these qualities. He’s been a fantastic servant for this country and he’s been brilliant so I think it was ridiculous for him to get booed and it wasn’t something the team liked.
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This notice was published: 2022-03-29 23:01:52