Harry Maguire and Harry Kane

Maguire on Tottenham and Kane

Saturday 10 April 2021 08:00

Harry Maguire is ready for a “battle” against England teammate Harry Kane when Manchester United travel to Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday afternoon.

The United captain is excited for a tricky fixture in North London that holds great importance for both teams’ pursuit of a top-four finish this season.

A 2-2 draw away to Newcastle United last weekend has left Tottenham with a lot to do in terms of climbing back into the Champions League qualification spots, but our Harry believes that should give the Londoners plenty of motivation.

“It’s a great game to be involved in,” Maguire said.

“We have more than enough to go there and get the three points. It’s two squads that you expect to be fighting at the top end of the table. We’ve got ourselves into a good position and they’re wanting to bridge that gap.”
Watch Maguire's full interview

The gap between the sides is currently 11 points, although United are more closely pursued by Leicester City, West Ham and Chelsea, who are four, eight and nine points behind respectively.

Maguire’s direct opponent on Sunday will be the league’s most prolific goalscorer, Harry Kane, who leads the charts for both goals and assists in the 2020/21 campaign and it's a task the skipper is relishing.

“I want to play in the biggest games possible against the best players; that’s why I joined this club. Harry [Kane] is one of those.

“I know him from England really well. He’s a top striker, one of the best in the world and he does it season after season, scores goals after goals.”

There’s no chance that their friendship from international duty will be seen on the pitch on Sunday, though.

“He'll be ready for battle and I'll be ready for battle. May the best man win.”

“It's not just individuals; it's a team effort. As a defensive unit we've got to be strong, go there and get a clean sheet and give the team the best opportunity to win the game.”

With a comeback victory against Brighton & Hove Albion last weekend, United are in a good position for the back-end of the season.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s squad know five more wins will assure a top four finish. Maguire isn’t focusing on that, but instead on United’s long-term progress.

“I think the improvement will be shown from this year to last year,” the 28-year-old explained.

“That was the main aim: to improve on last year. We need to beat the points tally and if we finish above third [last year’s position] then obviously that's even better.

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“At this club, we want to be winning the Premier League,” Maguire said, “but we also know that we've got a lot of improvement to be made to enable that. That's what we're striving to do. We need to kick on for the remaining games.”

“I’m definitely excited. It's a major part of the season and it’s where you make the memories and the big moments whether it's in the Cup or the league. I'm pretty sure when you look back on your career and you look at the [big] games, the majority of them come at the end of the season.”