Claude Puel has warned José Mourinho that attempting to sign Harry Maguire from Leicester next month would be a waste of time.
After rebuffing an offer from Manchester United last summer, the Foxes managed to tie the England centre back to a new five-year deal worth a reported £20m – and Puel is confident his side will hold onto the 25-year-old, even if United come for a second bite at the cherry.
“We cannot have guarantees but I think Harry decided this summer to remain with us and play with us for another season,” the Frenchman told The Mirror. “He is happy with us and saw the quality of the team and its ambition.”
Maguire gained widespread recognition during a stellar World Cup campaign for England, scoring an emphatic headed goal against Sweden to help his national side progress to the semi-finals. He was made a priority target by Mourinho as the Portuguese sought to bring defensive reinforcements to Old Trafford last summer, but the Foxes held onto their man – and Puel doesn’t foresee any issues arising in the next transfer window.
“Harry is a valuable player for the club and it is important to keep our best players and maintain our ambition this season … I think we will not have a problem this winter because we have a good squad with good guys.”
Maguire is set to feature in Saturday’s clash with Spurs after spending five weeks out with a knee injury he sustained playing against Cardiff. Puel confirmed the burly Yorkshireman was back in training and in line for a return to the squad, along with fellow defender Jonny Evans.
In less positive news for Leicester City fans, however, Jamie Vardy has been ruled out of Premier League action this weekend, as he continues to receive treatment for a persistent groin injury.