Harry Maguire dropped from England squad after assault conviction in Greece

Gareth Southgate, England's national team coach, has dropped Harry Maguire from the Three Lions squad for next month’s UEFA Nations League games over his conviction in Greece.

Maguire, a Manchester United defender and captain, was on Tuesday found guilty of three charges by a Greek court following his brawl with police officers.

The footballer was found guilty of assaulting a police officer, swearing, resisting arrest and attempted bribery by a court on the island of Syros on Tuesday.

The 27-year-old defender was sentenced to 21 months and 10 days in prison but the jail term was suspended because it was a first offence and the charges were classed as misdemeanours.

The court’s verdict on Maguire came at about the same time when he was initially named in England’s latest squad for September’s games against Iceland and Denmark.

But in a statement, Southgate said he decided to remove him from the team following the convictions.

“In light of this evening’s developments, I can confirm I have withdrawn Harry Maguire from the England squad for the matches against Iceland and Denmark,” the statement read.

“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.”

The £80 million player had earlier rejected the court verdict and announced that his legal team will appeal the ruling.

“Following the hearing today, I have instructed my legal team with immediate effect to inform the courts we will be appealing,” he said.

“I remain strong and confident regarding our innocence in this matter – if anything myself, family and friends are the victims.”

Manchester United also issued a statement supporting their player and the steps he wishes to take in order to clear his name.

The Red Devils stated that the former Leicester City defender’s legal team was not given enough time to prepare and would duly appeal the court ruling.

“Manchester United notes the verdict of the Greek court today. Harry Maguire pleaded not guilty to all of the misdemeanour charges made against him and he continues to strongly assert his innocence,” the club said.

“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. 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.”

Maguire, whose transfer from Leicester City made him the most expensive defender in history, was arrested last week along with two other men on the Greek island of Mykonos.



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