Man Utd plug defensive gap with record breaking £80m Maguire

August 6 – Harry Maguire has become the world’s most expensive defender after signing for Manchester United from Premier League rivals Leicester City for £80 million.

The 26-year-old has signed a six-year contract with an option for a further season, a fee that eclipses the deal that recently took Matthijs de Ligt from Ajax to Juventus last month for €75 million and, previously, Virgil van Dijk’s move to Liverpool from Southampton for up to £75 million in January 2018.

Maguire, who fills a key position that for months has been a priority for United despite the fact they already have six other central defenders on the books, is the second most expensive signing in English top-flight history after United team-mate Paul Pogba (£89 million). He also becomes the second most expensive British player of all time after Wales winger Gareth Bale, who joined Real Madrid from Tottenham for £85 million in 2013.

United will hope Maguire can transform the club in the same way that Van Dijk has at Liverpool.

United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer described Maguire as “one of the best centre backs in the game today”.

“He is a great reader of the game and has a strong presence on the pitch, with the ability to remain calm under pressure – coupled with his composure on the ball and a huge presence in both boxes.”

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