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I Thought The Greek Policemen Were Kidnappers – Harry Maguire

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download 20 1 I Thought The Greek Policemen Were Kidnappers - Harry Maguire

Manchester United defender Harry Maguire said he feared for his life when Greek police arrested him last week as he thought he was being kidnapped.
The England international told BBC sports editor Dan Roan that plain-clothed police officers, who did not identify themselves, pulled over his group’s minibus in Mykonos, threw him off the bus, hit him on his legs and told him his career was over.
The 27-year-old said he tried to run away – with one handcuff on – because he had no idea who the men were.
On Tuesday, Maguire was given a suspended sentence of 21 months and 10 days in prison after his trial on the Greek island of Syros.
He was found guilty of repeated bodily harm, attempted bribery, violence against public employees and insult after arrest on Mykonos.
On Wednesday, his legal team lodged an appeal against the verdict. In accordance with Greek law, the appeal nullifies Maguire’s conviction and there will be a full retrial in a more senior court.
An emotional Maguire, who broke down during the interview, said hearing the guilty verdict was “horrible” and that he “couldn’t quite believe it”.
The centre-back, who denies throwing any punches or trying to bribe the police, added: “I don’t feel I owe an apology to anybody.
“An apology is something when you have done something wrong.”
He said: “I don’t wish it on anybody. Obviously the situation has made it difficult for one of the biggest clubs in the world, so I regret putting the fans and the club through this, but I did nothing wrong.
“I found myself in a situation where it could have happened to anybody and anywhere.”
Asked how badly he was hurt, Maguire said: “They hit me a lot on the legs. It wasn’t on my mind. I was in that much of a panic. Fear. Scared for my life.”
Maguire said his family are suffering more than him and that his “conscience is clear”.
“I know what happened that night. I know the truth,” he added.
“When I speak about it I get worked up but that’s because it just makes me feel a bit angry inside. I will move on. I am mentally strong enough.”
Maguire – an £80m signing from Leicester City in 2019 – was named United’s permanent captain in January after the departure of Ashley Young to Inter Milan, and he is likely to remain skipper this season.
“It is such a huge honour to be captain of Manchester United – something I am really proud of,” he said. “It is a massive privilege to play for the club, never mind captain.
“It is not my decision to make but the one thing I will say is how supportive the club has been from top to bottom. They have been great with me and I thank them for that.”
On Tuesday, Maguire was withdrawn from the England squad for September’s Nations League matches against Iceland and Denmark.
He said: “I love playing for my country. Physically and mentally I am ready to play. I’m disappointed but of course I understand.”
How Maguire says the night unfolded
✓Maguire was on holiday with his fiancee Fern, his younger sister Daisy, his brother and his brother’s girlfriend, and two friends and their girlfriends.
They were out for drinks in Mykonos and texted their minibus driver to pick them up to take them home.
✓The driver was “20 minutes late” and Maguire said the group were tired and planning to head back to the villa.
Two men approached Daisy and asked her where she was from before Fern saw “my little sister’s eyes rolling to the back of her head. She ran over, she was fainting, in and out of consciousness.”
✓At this point Maguire said “everyone was shouting and were screaming”, when three Greek men dressed in plain clothes got involved.
Maguire said they were not trying to “cause an argument or a scuffle”, but “it was just a lot of shouting, a lot of commotion. No fighting, as has been reported. No punches thrown.”
✓Maguire said the Greek men were just trying to calm it down but they were “a little bit aggressive”.
✓The minibus arrived. Maguire said they got Daisy on the bus and “literally that was it – it wasn’t what everyone’s made it out to be. Don’t get me wrong – there was a lot of shouting, a big panic, but no fighting or anything.”
✓They told the driver to take them back to the villa and planned to go to the hospital, but Daisy recovered “pretty quickly”.
✓The bus drove for “5-10 minutes” and stopped and parked up alongside this road. “We looked outside and there were eight men surrounding the bus, all in plain clothes.”
✓The doors were opened and Maguire and a friend were “thrown off the bus”.
✓Maguire said the men did not say anything to them. It was at this point that Maguire thought they were being kidnapped.
✓Maguire and his friend ran to the main road, from where he rang his agent to ask for help, leaving messages on a group WhatsApp.
✓Maguire said when he turned to walk back to the bus, he and his friend had been circled by the men, who started walking towards them.
✓Maguire said: “We got down on our knees, put our hands in the air. And they just started hitting us. They got one of my hands in the handcuff. They were hitting my legs, saying my career’s over – ‘no more football; you won’t play again’. “At this point I thought there’s no chance these are police. I’ve no idea who they are. So I tried to run away. I had one hand in the handcuff – I was moving my hand. This is where the charges have come from – this is what they are saying is resisting arrest and this is what the assault is – no punches have been thrown. I didn’t believe they were the police.”
[I]Greek police dispute this version of events and in court the prosecution said Maguire, his brother and friend then physically and verbally attacked police officers. [/I]
✓Maguire said he was taken into the police station and was put in a cell. “That was the time I felt a little bit of relief, as crazy as that sounds. There were other people in the cell telling me to calm down and it felt like relief because that was the first time I actually believed I was in prison.

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Real Madrid ‘should never have let Cristiano Ronaldo leave for Juventus’

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skysports cristiano ronaldo 5138440 Real Madrid 'should never have let Cristiano Ronaldo leave for Juventus'

Cristiano Ronaldo is a “machine of sacrifice” who should never have been allowed to leave Real Madrid, according to Shakhtar Donetsk head coach Luis Castro.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner scored a club-record 450 goals for Madrid and won 15 trophies during his nine years in the Spanish capital.

He left for Juventus in a mega-money deal in July 2018 and has maintained his impressive form with 68 goals in all competitions, helping his side to successive Serie A titles.

That includes a return of a combined 69 goals and assists in the Italian top flight since the start of 2018-19 – two more than next best Ciro Immobile at Lazio.

Ahead of Shakhtar’s Champions League Group B opener with Madrid on Wednesday, Castro has questioned the LaLiga giants’ decision to let the superstar forward depart.

“When you have Cristiano on your team you should never let him go. Never,” he told Marca.World’s greatest
“We are talking about the best, the most effective footballer in the world, a machine, a machine of sacrifice.”

Ronaldo was crowned the world’s best player five times at Madrid and once during his spell with Manchester United, where he spent six seasons after joining from Sporting CP.

And Castro argued the Portugal international has done enough throughout his career to rightly be considered the greatest player to have ever played the game.

“I do not like to compare. But yes, for me he is the best,” Castro said. “Cristiano has a story behind him that is exemplary.

“He moved at just 11 years of age to Lisbon to be a footballer, leaving his home. Cristiano is someone that has risen alone, with a unique determination.

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Man United leave Harry Maguire and Edinson Cavani at home for PSG clash

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images 32 4 Man United leave Harry Maguire and Edinson Cavani at home for PSG clash

The 33-year-old did not travel to the French capital with the first-team squad on Monday and is expected to continue training back at the club’s Carrington base this week.

There are reports claiming that the Uruguayan could still make his own way to Paris for the match but it appears unlikely considering he was not at Manchester airport.Club captain Harry Maguire also did not travel with the group despite starring and scoring in the Red Devils’ 4-1 win over Newcastle at the weekend.

There were hopes Cavani could make his United debut at the ground where he became PSG’s all-time leading scorer and fans’ favourite during a seven-year career in France.

However, Cavani may not have to wait until the weekend to make his first appearance for the club, when they welcome Chelsea to Old Trafford.

PSG boss Thomas Tuchel believes Cavani is still one of the best strikers in world football but played down any significance of a potential return for the Uruguayan.Cavani left the club as a free agent in the summer – missing PSG’s run to the Champions League final – and joined United on deadline day.

He has been in quarantine for the last two weeks and only trained with his new team-mates twice.

‘He lives for goals and scoring,’ said Tuchel. ‘When he has the confidence, he is one of the best No 9s in world football. If you play for so long in a club like ours and have such a connection with the fans, you have character and he deserves the appreciation.

‘He will be there in training from the first until the last minute, and in the game from the first second until the last second. On the player’s departure after refusing to sign a contract extension to he could play in the latter stages of the Champions League in Portugal, Tuchel played down suggestions that Cavani will have a point to prove.

‘I was hoping obviously to play in Portugal with everybody in my squad. It wasn’t just my team other teams had their issues,’ he added.

‘It wasn’t just Edi. Covid made the whole situation really complicated and this was for many teams not just us.



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Former Blues striker believes Kepa is now the third choice keeper at Chelsea

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images 31 4 Former Blues striker believes Kepa is now the third choice keeper at Chelsea

The £72million stopper was signed from Athletic Bilbao two years ago and was intended to become the club’s long-term No 1.

Initially it looked as though Chelsea had replaced former keeper Thibaut Courtois with someone of similar standing, although there have always been questions asked about the Spain international’s ability and character.

Blues boss Frank Lampard dropped Kepa at times last season and signed Rennes goalkeeper Edouard Mendy in the summer to remedy the situation.

Due to Mendy’s recent injury he has had to rely on Kepa once more, with the 26-year-old starting in their 3-3 draw with Southampton on Saturday.

It was a poor display at the back from Chelsea as they chucked away a 2-0 and then 3-2 lead to draw with the Saints.

Kepa had another poor afternoon and was at fault for Che Adams’ goal after rushing out and failing to claim the ball.Cascarino who made 40 appearances for Chelsea between 1992-94 believes his latest gaffe will see the Spaniard move down the pecking order at Stamford Bridge.

The former Blues forward told : ‘He’s gone from No 1 to No 2 goalkeeper, and after (the Southampton) performance he’s probably No 3 now.

‘He won’t even make the bench now as (Willy) Caballero will be No 2.

‘I’m a bit surprised (Lampard) chose to play Kepa; he doesn’t fancy Kepa and it’s obvious.’Caballero has done very little wrong, but because they’ve paid such a high fee for a player they need to justify playing him to give him an opportunity to perform.’

Former Manchester City keeper Caballero was Kepa’s understudy last season and has proved himself to be adequate back-up, however at the age of 39 he is unlikely to feature regularly for the Blues.

Frank Lampard will be concerned his side’s defensive frailties will cost them this season, the draw with Southampton was already the second time in five league fixtures that Chelsea have conceded three goals in a game.

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