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Man Utd 'should've signed Conor Coady' and changed formation because Harry Maguire 'can't run'

Daniel Marland

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Man Utd 'should've signed Conor Coady' and changed formation because Harry Maguire 'can't run'

Featured Image Credit: Everton & Alamy

Manchester United have been told they should've signed Conor Coady from Wolverhampton Wanderers and changed their formation - because captain Harry Maguire 'can't run'.

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The Red Devils slipped to a 2-1 defeat against Brighton and Hove Albion last weekend in Erik ten Hag's first Premier League game as manager.

United added to their defence this summer with the £49 million purchase of Lisandro Martinez from Ajax.

Paul Merson believes they missed a trick not going for Coady however, who earlier this week sealed a season-long loan move to Everton.

Coady in action for Everton against Aston Villa. (Image Credit: Alamy)
Coady in action for Everton against Aston Villa. (Image Credit: Alamy)

"No one wants to go to them [Manchester United]," Merson declared. "It's horrible but no one does. Their main rivals are Liverpool who are much better. They've got the team next door [Manchester City] who are the best team about at the moment. Footballers ain't silly. Anyone pays money now."

On Tuesday, United pulled out of a move for Bologna striker Marko Arnautovic due to an inflated price tag and backlash from supporters.

Merson went on to claim United are going for 'bargain buys' and if that's their mindset, they should've bid for England international Coady.

He thinks it would help Maguire, who is better at coming out with the ball but doesn't have the pace to get back.

Maguire following United's 2-1 defeat to Brighton. (Image Credit: Alamy)
Maguire following United's 2-1 defeat to Brighton. (Image Credit: Alamy)

The former Arsenal midfielder continued: "The most embarrassing thing is, you know, I like Arnautovic. But they're going for Arnautovic, for players who are about £7 million pound.

"They should have been going for Conor Coady, they need to play three at the back!

"Maguire, I don't want to keep going on, but Maguire can’t run. You need to play a five at the back. Play in a three, he's a very good player. Comes out with the ball, he can pass it, he's a defender and he can get tighter.

"When he's playing in a four he can't go and engage because if he gets left one versus one, he's going to struggle."

Coady and Maguire have played together for the Three Lions and Coady plays as the middle centre back in a three.

Maguire is usually on the left and can get forward more with protection behind.

Merson maintains United should adopt similar tactics with one of Raphael Varane, Victor Lindelof or Martinez making up the trio.

He stressed: "You put Conor Coady in there, he's the middle of the three and put Maguire that side with Varane or whoever, you start from there. When you get Coady in the team, you don't have to play [Scott] McTominay AND Fred because you've got your insurance."

Topics: Manchester United, Harry Maguire, Conor Coady

Daniel Marland
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