Wayne Rooney has predicted that Lisandro Martinez will become a big player at Manchester United, while Harry Maguire will have a huge tournament in Qatar.
Man United signed Martinez from Ajax over the summer for a transfer fee that could rise to €65million after on-pitch performances.
Martinez has silenced his critics, including Jamie Carragher and Graeme Souness, who both initially said the defender would struggle as a centre-back in the Premier League due to his height and that he goes down too readily and will be found out by top forwards as the season proceeds further, with his top performances for the Red Devils.
The Argentine has started all of United’s 14 Premier League matches and has obviously improved the Red Devils’ backline, thanks to his determination and fighting spirit he puts in every game.
Wayne Rooney has been impressed by Martinez’s performances under Erik ten Hag and predicted that the 24-year-old can go on and become a big player for the Red Devils.
“I really like Lisandro Martínez. Watching him for Manchester United recently, he is really composed and aggressive. He is perfect for international football and will be a big player for [Argentina],” Rooney told The Times.
Harry Maguire has struggled with consistency in recent seasons and has seemingly lost his starting place at Manchester United under Erik ten Hag, who prefers Raphael Varane, Lisandro Martinez, and Victor Lindelof ahead of the England international.
Maguire may have struggled at Old Trafford since his switch from Leicester City in 2019, the 28-year-old has always been at the top of his game at the international level.
The ex-Leicester City defender played a huge role in England’s run to the Euro 2020 final and was an important player in the Three Lions squad that finished fourth in the 2018 Russia World Cup.
Rooney is anticipating another big tournament from the Manchester United skipper but admitted to Maguire’s struggles at the club level.
“I think Harry Maguire will have another big tournament. He has performed better for England than he has for Manchester United — I think he would agree — and over the last couple of years United have struggled,” Rooney added.
“He hasn’t had much protection and it is no coincidence that now there is more stability in the middle of the pitch with Casemiro, Manchester United‘s defenders are playing better. With England, he has always had that protection.”