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Harry Maguire to start Manchester United transformation, says Jamie Redknapp
Watch Man Utd vs Chelsea on Renault Super Sunday from 4pm on Sky Sports Premier League; Kick-off at 4.30pm
Last Updated: 11/08/19 5:26pm
Harry Maguire will address fundamental issues in the Manchester United dressing room and mark the start of an era of transformation at Old Trafford, says Jamie Redknapp.
United spent a world-record £80m to sign Maguire from Leicester after a protracted summer transfer saga, eclipsing the £75m Liverpool spent on Virgil van Dijk.
The England international followed Aaron Wan-Bissaka by making the switch Old Trafford this summer, and both are in contention to make their Premier League debuts for the club against Chelsea on Renault Super Sunday, live on Sky Sports.
United probably paid too much for Maguire in Redknapp's opinion, but that figure can be overlooked in light of the attributes the 26-year-old will bring on and off the pitch.
"It seems like there is something fundamentally wrong with that dressing room," the Sky Sports pundit said. "There are too many players who don't feel that passion to play for Manchester United.
"By signing someone like Maguire - a warrior, someone who wants to win and knows the game, is technically sound and a good defender - you can start to change that whole process that has been going on over the past two years.
"Make no mistake about it, £80m is an awful lot of money for a defender - it's astronomical. It's too much money, but United have got a really good defender that will hopefully change the dynamic."
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Van der Vaart questions Maguire deal
Former Netherlands and Tottenham forward Rafael van der Vaart joined Redknapp in previewing Sunday's game at Old Trafford and, having watched Maguire play for England against Holland at this summer's Nations League finals, he expressed his shock the defender's world-record move.
"Harry Maguire was by far the worst player on the pitch at the Nations League against the Netherlands," he said. "And then two months later, United have bought him for £80m!"
But Redknapp assured Van der Vaart of Maguire's quality, adding: "He can play, he's very good on the ball, good coming out from the back. For a big guy, he's quick and he did a great job at Leicester.
"There is a lot of pressure on him, that transfer fee is going to weigh heavily on his shoulders, but technically he can play, don't worry about that."
Lampard takes first leap
Frank Lampard takes charge of his first game in the Premier League as Chelsea manager on Sunday.
It's been a far from ideal start to life at Chelsea, with transfer bans and high-profile departures dominating pre-season, but Redknapp has already seen signs that he is suited to the job.
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"Chelsea can't sign any players and they've lost their best one with Eden Hazard gone," Redknapp adds.
"There was a difficult situation with one of the most influential players in the dressing room, David Luiz, wanting to leave. But Frank has handled the situation well, getting rid of a player that doesn't want to be there and could have been poisonous in the dressing room quickly.
"It's not been the easiest of starts for Frank but if he can finish in the top four, after everything that has happened, it would be an amazing season for him. His first season at Chelsea is not going to be easy, but Frank already looks very comfortable in his position."
Time for some patience at Chelsea
Chelsea's inability to register new players means a handful of the club's promising young players could get some long-awaited exposure in the first team on a consistent basis this season.
For Redknapp, the talent has been there all along, now Chelsea have no option but to utilise it. "You need time to bring young players through and unfortunately at Chelsea managers have had two or three-year cycles," he said. "Time is what they have now.
"If they do start to believe that young players are the way forward, the likes of Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham will get an opportunity. Mount can compete in the Premier League, he's got so much quality - he sees that final ball, has that yard of pace and scores goals.
"I was given my chance when I was younger. These players need a chance and a manager that gives them the opportunity to go and play."