Ferdinand does not think Harry Maguire is fit enough to go to the Euros

Rio Ferdinand doesn’t believe Manchester United captain Harry Maguire should have been selected in England’s Euro 2020 squad.

Maguire missed the closing games of the season through injury and Gareth Southgate has admitted it’ll be ‘tight’ for him to be fit for the tournament’s opening game against Croatia.

Ferdinand said on his FIVE YouTube show that he would love for Maguire to prove him wrong.

But he called on his own experiences with David Beckham in 2002 and Wayne Rooney in 2006 in terms of them not being 100 per cent fit for a major tournament.

“England needed another centre back. Harry Maguire’s not even fit, I wouldn’t even take Maguire. You’re not fit, you’re not going to be fit for ages, it doesn’t make sense,” said Ferdinand.

“I’ve been in squads with players who haven’t been fit and they don’t perform when they’re not themselves – Becks [David Beckham] and Wazza [Wayne Rooney]. As good as Maguire is, he’s not a Becks or a Wazza.

“I don’t think you should take someone who’s not 100% fit. It’s hard to come back and get into a rhythm. That narrative ends up taking over the squad and it becomes the conversation and a distraction. Do we really need that?

“It’s pointless I think. Hopefully he proves me wrong, I would love it if he did. We’ve got to prepare as if (he) won’t be with us and if we can get (him) to where we want (him) to be, then that’s a bonus.”

Maguire a risk for England

Southgate clearly feels that Maguire can make some kind of impact for England this summer and a 26-man squad has given him more leeway.

That said, there are only three other out-and-out central defenders in the squad – John Stones, Tyrone Mings and Conor Coady.

From a United point of view, the last thing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will want is Maguire returning after the summer injured and his pre-season being delayed.

But Maguire boosted his reputation at the 2018 World Cup and if fit, another strong summer this year would have a similar impact and should mean he comes back to United full of confidence.

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Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.