England manager Gareth Southgate is looking forward to seeing how Harry Maguire copes with the step up to international level after the former Sheffield United defender’s first call-up arrived yesterday.
Injury prevented the Sheffield-born 24 year-old him being added to the squads for the summer internationals - the World Cup qualifying draw against Scotland and the 3-2 friendly defeat by France.
Now, as one of only two new faces in the England set up for the upcoming matches against Malta and Slovakia - Watford’s Nathaniel Chalobah the other - Maguire has the opportunity to show he is capable of breaking into the backline in Southgate’s side.
The England boss said: “I thought his performances for Hull were very good (last season).
“He’s a defender that’s very comfortable with the ball and that’s the profile of international football.
“I think he’s already adjusted really well at Leicester to a new club. He plays with great composure (and) can defend the ball in the box.
“So I think it’s a really good opportunity for us to have a look at him... for him to get a feel of being around the senior squad and we can assess how he goes in training and that sort of thing.
“As you say, we were looking at him towards the end of last season but he wasn’t really fully fit towards the end of the year.”
Maguire joins a squad full of South Yorkshire and North Derbyshire representation with fellow former Blades Gary Cahill and Kyle Walker already England mainstays.
Jamie Vardy also remains in the squad as well as Barnsley-born John Stones.
FIVE THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW ABOUT HARRY MAGUIRE
1 The defender is actually known by his middle name - had he not made that decision, it would be Jacob Maguire being called into Gareth Southgate’s squad.
2 Former Hull manager Steve Bruce had a lofty vision for Maguire, once likening him to Manchester City and Ivory Coast midfield star Yaya Toure and suggesting continental sides would use Maguire in a more advanced role.
3 It was not always that way, though - in his first season after Bruce signed him from boyhood club Sheffield United, Maguire made just five Tigers appearances and only one start before being loaned out to Wigan for the latter part of the campaign.
4 Maguire has just half an hour of international experience at age-group level, having featured as a substitute for England Under-21s against Northern Ireland in November 2012 when still with the Blades.
5 Maguire is one of three footballing brothers, all defenders - younger sibling Laurence is with League Two Chesterfield while Joe, the eldest of the trio, plays for non-league Buxton.
Additional reporting Press Association Sport