Adam Lallana is the latest to change his opinion on Harry Maguire, with the centre-back being an instrumental figure in England’s march to the Euro 2020 final.
The Englishman made a swift recovery from an ankle injury to get back in the starting XI against Czech Republic, and has remained ever-present in defence since.
Ironically enough, it took his absence for many to realise just what he adds to the backline.
Since Maguire’s return, the English defence became much more composed, while his ball-playing ability has offered another dimension to Gareth Southgate’s attack during the summer tournament.
Lallana has been hugely impressed by the centre-back’s performances, writing in the Times, “I misjudged Harry Maguire. I don’t mind admitting that. I have always thought he was a very good player, but what this tournament has shown me, and hopefully others, is that he is at the next level: a proven world-class defender.”
The former Liverpool midfielder’s time at Anfield was plagued by injuries. As such, it comes as no surprise that he further lauded how seamlessly his fellow countryman slotted into ‘one of the biggest stages’ after his six-week injury lay-off.
Maguire has been England’s best rated player in the European Championships. If he guides the Three Lions to their maiden continental trophy, not only would he be classified as world class by more individuals, he might just end up being named Player of the Tournament.