Manchester United defender Harry Maguire has often been criticised for his lack of personality as his record £80million transfer from Leicester City has turned sour. However, the former Red Devils captain is a popular figure among team-mates for a reason, and he showcased why in a recent viral clip.
Maguire’s professionalism and character – resulting in his unlikely renaissance this season – have never come into question during his struggles at Old Trafford.
But Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s decision to hand the 30-year-old the armband just one year after becoming the most expensive defender in history raised eyebrows.
And his retention of skipper status in a squad with huge personalities like Cristiano Ronaldo and Casemiro caused further confusion.
Maguire has come across as a reserved figure during TV interviews and on the pitch, owing to disputes over his credibility as captain before losing the honour to Bruno Fernandes last summer.
However, in a recent viral clip of Luke Littler visiting Carrington, the England stalwart appeared to be nothing of the sort.
Littler, fresh off his magical World Darts Championship run and Bahrain Masters triumph, was a guest at Carrington this week ahead of this weekend’s Dutch Masters.
United released footage of the 17-year-old sensation, a lifelong supporter, greeting every player and coach before watching training ahead of Sunday’s FA Cup fourth-round trip to Newport County.
Sky Sports and PDC were also present at Carrington to film some darts content, where Littler took on Maguire and Christian Eriksen in a series of challenges.
Rasmus Hojlund, Tom Heaton, Mason Mount, Victor Lindelof and a group of coaches watched on as the United duo stepped onto the oche to face Littler.
The 12-minute video offered an inside look into the banter shared between Red Devils team-mates, and Maguire appeared to be one of the biggest characters in the room.
Maguire beat Eriksen in the first challenge, scoring 171 from nine throws compared to the Dane’s 136.
Littler wowed as he hit a 180 on his first visit to the board, as he did at the Bahrain Masters earlier this month, where he recorded his first senior nine-darter against Nathan Aspinall. The Nuke ended the challenge on 380.
Eriksen hit back in the second challenge, scoring 362 in one-minute of throwing compared to Maguire’s 194. Littler hit 544, obviously.
The 31-year-old midfielder completed the comeback victory in the deciding game, in which both players had six throws at their United number.
Maguire hit the single five just twice, and Eriksen scored one single 14 before generating scenes by saving a triple 14 until his final throw.
He may have been unsuccessful in the darts challenge, but Maguire left a lasting impression on fans and could be a welcome returnee at Rodney Parade this weekend.