Ever since Bruno Fernandes was awarded Manchester United’s captaincy after it was taken away from Harry Maguire, the writing has appeared to be on the wall.
The English centre-back who shifted to the Red Devils for a record fee ever paid for a defender has simply not had the sort of career that he was slated to enjoy at Old Trafford.
It wasn’t that Maguire was an objectively bad defender. Some numbers and tactical analysis quite convincingly indicate that at certain aspects he was a pivotal part of United’s lineup. However, high-profile gaffes and social-media criticism speak louder than statistics and few are now surprised that player and club are on the cusp of parting ways.
Few were surprised when they took to X (formerly Twitter) reacting to the news that West Ham United and Manchester United have agreed to a £30 million fee for Harry Maguire’s sale. The London-based club is yet to chalk out personal terms with the defender.
Most supporters were relieved that an awkward and frankly embarrassing situation could be avoided at United with a former captain warming the bench week in and week out. Further, many supporters also lauded Erik ten Hag for pulling the band-aid and finding the solution to this issue this summer itself rather than needlessly prolonging the ordeal.
One fan tweeted: “Due to what has gone before, Maguire just like Jones, Fellaini etc had been typecast. Utd conceded 1 goal in 12 games when he played at the back end of last season yet all I can remember are his mistakes. It’s definitely the right time for him to leave for all parties. I wish him all the best.”
“It just didn’t work out. Harry Maguire is not as bad some (myself included at times) made him out to be. The price tag, being made MUFC captain so quickly, the incident in Greece, the constant errors (lack of confidence) did him no favours … Hope he smashes it at West Ham,” another added.
The third said: “Just know Harry Maguire‘s big head will absolutely score a header against us at the London Stadium. If you accept these things, the pain will be less.”
“Maguire has been a thorough professional throughout this entire process. Yes, he’s not been good enough for us but I am just happy that all the parties are able to move on from this saga. Good luck, Harry,” a fourth noted.
There were quite a few murmurs over the final fee agreed for the player though, with the sharp drop from the world-record number leaving a sour taste in the mouths of many supporters. Regardless, it is a saga done and dusted with hope holding strong that such a high-profile mistake is avoided in the future.
As for replacements for the Englishman, the names of Jean-Clair Todibo and Benjamin Pavard are already doing the rounds over possible transfers.