Man United star Harry Maguire  vindicated in decision to stay after rejecting West Ham transfer
EPL

Man United star Harry Maguire vindicated in decision to stay after rejecting West Ham transfer

Nov 13, 2023

Harry Maguire feels vindicated in his decision to snub a summer transfer after forcing his way back into Erik ten Hag’s starting XI.

The Manchester United defender turned down a switch to West Ham in order to fight for his place at Old Trafford having fallen down the pecking order.

Maguire has won his place back in the United line-up having been previously deemed as surplus to requirements

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Maguire has won his place back in the United line-up having been previously deemed as surplus to requirementsCredit: Getty

Despite starting the season on the bench with Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez preferred instead, the 30-year-old has started the last eight games in all competitions.

He has seized his chance following Martinez’s foot injury, and is now the club’s first choice centre-half with Varane struggling for form and fitness.

It marks a remarkable turnaround for the ex-Leicester star, who was stripped of the captaincy ahead of the 2023/24 campaign.

But the 60-cap England international has insisted he never doubted his qualities, and when asked whether he feels as if it is personal vindication for staying, he said: “Of course.

“I played a few games last year, 16 or 17 starts, and I felt like I performed really well in the games I played in. I just didn’t play as many as I would have liked.

“On the other hand, Rapha (Varane) and Licha (Martinez) were playing brilliantly and kept numerous clean sheets. I had to bide my time and be patient.

“I had two or three opportunities last season to get a run of games but I broke down with illness, I broke down with injuries twice, so I never got the rhythm and never got the run of games that I could prove myself to the manager.

“I have got that now, I am really enjoying my football and I really enjoy playing for this club.

The United defender has started the last eight matches in all competitions

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The United defender has started the last eight matches in all competitionsCredit: Getty

“I was willing to stay and fight for my place and we have four, five top international centre-backs at this club and the competition for places is really high.”

He added: “Working hard in training is the main thing and making sure you’re ready. I started 16 or 17 games last year and felt like my form was there.

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“There was a lot of talk about me because I wasn’t playing games, but that is the way it is.

“I was playing well for my country, went to the World Cup and played well and always thought my form was there.

“But I am up against some top, top-level centre-backs and last year they were playing amazing, so I didn’t get as many opportunities as I would have liked.

“This club demands competition for places and that is what we have in my position.”

Maguire will now be looking to impress on the international stage with the Three Lions for their final Euro 2024 qualifiers against Malta and North Macedonia.


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