Life comes at you fast.
Four years ago this summer, Manchester United paid £80 million to secure the services of Harry Maguire, a record transfer fee for a defender that still stands.
Sure, it was a lot of money, but at the time, it seemed like he was worth every cent. The club desperately needed a good center half and back line leader and Maguire had long been considered one of the best in the league. Pep Guardiola had tried to get him to replace Vincent Kompany while Jose Mourinho was so upset that United didn’t sign him in 2018 that he was still complaining about it a year later.
During Maguire’s first season at United, he made that fee look like a bargain, playing every minute of every match in the league and bringing a level of authority, skill and stability not seen since the heyday of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic. When he was given the captain’s armband after only a few months at the club, it seemed like a no-brainer.
This weekend, when Maguire announced that he had been stripped of the captaincy, it seemed like another no-brainer for United. Maguire has been a liability for several seasons now and had lost his place under Erik ten Hag. He’s been so bad that even politicians outside the UK are taking shots at him. A departure seems inevitable— the only question is whether it will be a permanent or loan move.
So what happened?(more…)