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In Focus: Maguire in a Harry for Red Devils revival
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Callum Rice-Coates
LiveScore
Harry Maguire has impressed after returning to the Manchester United team
Harry Maguire has impressed after returning to the Manchester United team

Harry Maguire's redemption arc looks to be under way.

The Manchester United defender impressed in last weekend's 2-1 win at Sheffield United and followed that up with the winning goal against FC Copenhagen in the Champions League on Tuesday night.

With some confidence restored, Maguire will now be aiming to rebuild his reputation after a difficult period at Old Trafford.

We take a look at his chances of a Red Devils revival ahead of today's Manchester derby.

Building momentum

Having not started any of United's opening seven Premier League games, Maguire was named in the XI for the home clash with Brentford earlier this month.

He contributed an assist on that occasion as Scott McTominay's late double turned the match on its head and gave the hosts a 2-1 victory.

After playing 90 minutes for England against Italy, Maguire was then selected again by Erik ten Hag for the visit of bottom side Sheffield United.

And he excelled at Bramall Lane, completing more passes than any player on the pitch (79) and looking assured alongside Jonny Evans.

Maguire also had the most touches (106) and ranked first among his team-mates for aerial duels won (five).

Harry Maguire was Manchester United's star performer against Sheffield United
Harry Maguire was Manchester United's star performer against Sheffield United

Changing opinions

After facing criticism for the best part of 12 months, Maguire certainly deserves credit for his performances since returning to the team.

But there is still a long way to go until he is fully re-established as United's main man in defence.

The 30-year-old will need to maintain his current form or even improve on it, particularly with Raphael Varane returning to fitness.

Ten Hag, though, has been pleased with Maguire, who only started eight Premier League games last term.

Speaking earlier this week, the United boss said: "He [Maguire] is playing much more proactively in possession, stepping in, passing vertically.

"He's defending on the front foot, defending forward, very confident in the duels.

"I think he is dominating in the right way with his aggression against opponents."

Harry Maguire looked back to his best against his former club at Bramall Lane
Harry Maguire looked back to his best against his former club at Bramall Lane

Happy as Harry

His goal against Copenhagen will only have added to Maguire's renewed self-belief.

The England international had been written off by many, so fighting his way back into the team and making a significant impact has required impressive resilience.

He said: "When you are not on your game it gets picked up, but I am really proud and pleased how I have acted over these six to 12 months.

"I have been given an opportunity and I want to help the team and get the club back to where it should be."

Maguire, whose name was chanted at Old Trafford on Tuesday night, is a reminder of the changeable nature of narratives in football.

Dismissed as surplus to requirements not so long ago, he could again have a big part to play as United prepare for this afternoon's huge clash with Manchester City.

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