Bryan Robson discusses England v Germany and Harry Maguire leadership skills

As speculation mounts that Southgate will opt to play five at the back – Maguire and his United team-mate Luke Shaw plus Kieran Trippier, Kyle Walker and John Stones – Robson feels the understanding between some of those individuals can prove crucial in nullifying Germany’s considerable threat.

“This is why you’re a player – for games like this in a major tournament,” Bryan told us in an exclusive interview on Tuesday morning.

“It’s always a massive game against Germany. I do think England have got a chance, even though Germany have sometimes just had that hold over England over the years. But I don’t think this is one of the strongest German sides in a competition I’ve seen. I think there are a few weaknesses there and, hopefully, with England’s energy levels, if they’ve got the belief, then I think we’ve got a great chance of progressing. If they can be mentally strong in the game and believe in themselves, I do think we can definitely beat the Germans.

“It’s great to see Harry Maguire back fit and I thought he played really well in the last game. Luke came in for [Ben] Chilwell and I think he played pretty well too. So hopefully the two of them do play and I can’t see any reason why Gareth can’t do that because I think it’s a good set-up with Walker and Stones, who know each other really well from Manchester City, and Harry and Luke for United, who work really well.

“I think it’s got a lovely balance to it, whether they go for a back-four or a back-five. The balance of that looks really good and an understanding between the players is helpful. Also, Harry Kane hasn’t fired at the moment but this is a great opportunity for him now to hopefully have his best game in the competition so far and go on and lead by example and win the game for us.”

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