Glen Johnson believes Chelsea forward Timo Werner could prove to be an ‘absolute nightmare’ for Manchester United defender Harry Maguire.
United take on Chelsea at Old Trafford in a crucial Premier League fixture on Saturday evening and captain Maguire is expected to return to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s starting XI having not travelled for the midweek victory over Paris Saint-Germain.
Maguire has been maligned by sections of the United fanbase for his performances this season with the Reds conceding 11 goals in their first three league games.
The 27-year-old did make a good comeback after the international break with an accomplished performance against Newcastle capped off with a fine headed goal.
But United’s defensive brilliance against PSG without their captain has led some to question whether Maguire should automatically resume his role in central defence against Chelsea.
And ex-Liverpool full-back Johnson thinks Maguire would struggle against someone as dynamic as Werner.
“If I’m Timo Werner, I’d be like, “Please play him!”, Johnson told Optus Sport, as quoted by the Metro.
I really would. ‘I think he would be an absolute nightmare for him.
“But I agree, in the bigger picture, it’s hard to leave your captain out and obviously he’s a big player for them.
“But on that last performance, if I’m Tuanzebe, I’d be thinking: “Why aren’t I playing?”’
Maguire’s pace is an obvious issue which has been exposed on numerous occasions already this season.
Chelsea aren’t short of speed in attack and United will have to be cautious defensively, regardless of whether Maguire returns to the side.
Axel Tuanzebe, who was outstanding in a back three against PSG in his first appearance since December 2019, deserves to be included in Solskjaer’s team on Saturday evening.