Manchester United captain Harry Maguire sat out England’s easy win over minnows Andorra at the weekend.
It was a sensible call to rest him, with a seriously tough test upcoming this week against Poland.
England travel to Warsaw for a World Cup qualifier in what is potentially the trickiest fixture of the qualifying group.
With a five point advantage over Poland already, a win would effectively confirm England’s qualification for World Cup 2022.
Challenge for Maguire
The big test ahead pits Harry Maguire up against one of the world’s most prolific strikers, Robert Lewandowski.
Lewandowski has 69 international goals for Poland and is the team captain.
He is in form too, scoring six goals and providing two assists in his last four international fixtures.
This season he has begun with five goals in three Bundesliga matches, following on from a staggering 41 goals in 29 games last season.
Lewandowski was denied a potential Ballon d’Or win in 2020 when the award was cancelled, and he has been putting together another season in which he has a strong chance of winning it.
This will be a really tough test for Maguire and England, who dodged Lewandowski at Wembley in a 2-1 win in April because the striker was out with an injury.
Maguire scored the winning goal in that fixture after fellow centre-back John Stones had also scored. This time around the duo are likely to be kept busy at the other end of the pitch.
Test against the best
This match is a really good test for Maguire which may end up benefitting Manchester United.
United have high hopes of going far in the Champions League this season and Lewandowski could be a potential opponent the team may face if we can qualify for the knockout stages.
Getting a chance to gain experience against a truly world class opponent will prepare Maguire for similarly tough challenges which could lie in his path.
This is a real chance for Maguire to demonstrate that he belongs amid the very best centre-backs in Europe.
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