Harry Maguire explains Michael Carrick half-time team talk that inspired Man Utd

Harry Maguire has shed light on Michael Carrick’s half-time team talk which inspired a 2-0 Manchester United win against Villarreal in the Champions League group stage.

United secured their first away win of the season in the competition after Cristiano Ronaldo’s 78th minute lob and Jadon Sancho’s first goal for the club took the game beyond Unai Emery’s side.

The Red Devils had to fight hard for their important victory, with the players having come under huge pressure while camped in their own half for the first 45 minutes of Carrick’s tenure.

And captain Maguire has now revealed that it was Carrick’s tactical shift which eventually led to the goals, with the United boss having told his players to defend further up the pitch rather than inviting pressure

Speaking to BT Sport, Maguire said: "As a Man United team we want to be on the front foot and aggressive and play at a high tempo.

"The first half we played with a bit too much edgy and played with too much fear but we were solid without putting in enough pressure on those on the ball.

"We spoke about that at half-time and the first goal came from that."

Maguire and United were under enormous pressure to win their first match without Ole Gunnar Solskjaer following the Norwegian’s dismissal on Sunday.

The 28-year-old defender had received a barrage of criticism for his recent performances, having been sent off in the 4-1 loss to Watford, but claimed the players knew how important the Villarreal game was in turning the tide.

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Maguire added: "It’s massive for our season, we knew going into the game the last few months haven’t been good enough and we knew we needed a result for our season and fans, we know how tough it’s been and we need to make sure that’s a start.

"It wasn’t pretty, first half especially tough, two teams going for it but knew they couldn’t lose the game as well so it was important to stay in the game.

"I think the emphasis was on getting a result, we know how coming away from home in Europe is; you've got to set up solid and not give away goals.

"I thought we did that really well and like I said, second half we controlled the game especially after the 60th minute and we probably got what we deserved with the amount of chances we created."

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