The Manchester United skipper was named in the initial England squad for the upcoming Nations League matches. However, Harry Maguire was found guilty of assault, resisting arrest, and repeated attempts of bribery hours later and was given a suspended prison sentence of 21 months and 10 days. Consequently, he has been dropped by Gareth Southgate.
Southgate confirmed the decision in an official statement released just after Maguire’s sentencing. He said: “In light of this evening’s developments, I can confirm I have withdrawn Harry Maguire from the England squad for the matches against Iceland and Denmark. As I said earlier today, I reserved the right to review the situation. Having spoken to Manchester United and the player, I have made this decision in the best interests of all parties and with consideration of the impact on our preparations for next week.”
Earlier, Futballnews broke the story of how Maguire had been arrested in Greece and how the trial went through after an incident in Greece last week, with the defender, his brother Joe Maguire and their friend Christopher Sharman. Judging from Maguire’s latest Instagram story, the ex-Leicester City defender looks to be feeling hard done by the court ruling.
The post says ” Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon and the truth – Buddha”. Clearly, Maguire feels that the truth about what went down in Greece hasn’t been totally revealed. He has maintained his innocence and said he is determined to clear his name, as the defender released a statement saying that he will appeal the sentence.
Manchester United has also confirmed that the decision will be appealed on the basis that Maguire’s defence team had minimal time to prepare. “It should be noted that the prosecution confirmed the charges and provided their evidence late on the day before the trial, giving the defence team minimal time to digest them and prepare.” The club said.
“A request for the case to be adjourned was subsequently denied. On this basis, along with the substantial body of evidence refuting the charges, Harry Maguire’s legal team will now appeal the verdict, to allow a full and fair hearing at a later date.” In the best interest of the club, the English giants will look to close this ugly chapter as soon as possible.