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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists he has NOT thought about taking the captaincy from 'absolute stalwart and true leader' Harry Maguire - as he backs Manchester United defender after criticism from 'so-called experts' over England cupped-ears celebration

Daily Mail
Daily Mail
 2021-11-20

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has backed Harry Maguire to prove his critics wrong and insisted he has no plans to take the captaincy away from the defender.

Maguire came under fire from former United captain Roy Keane as well as Ian Wright during the international break for his goal celebration during England's 5-0 win over Albania last week.

The out-of-form centre-back headed home after nine minutes and raced away after his celebration by cupping his ears, perhaps in response to his critics following his poor displays for United this season.

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (L) has backed Man United captain Harry Maguire despite his poor form
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Maguire headed home to give England the lead against Albania after nine minutes
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Ex-United captain Roy Keane slammed Maguire's England goal celebrations as 'embarrassing' 

Maguire insisted after the game he was not trying to silence his critics but Keane was quick to slam the England international.

The pundit branded the celebration 'embarrassing' and insisted the goal did not redeem the defender from being a 'disgrace' for United.

Some fans have called for Maguire to have the captaincy taken away from him at Old Trafford and reports emerged last month that an unnamed team-mate questioned questioned Solskjaer's call to hand him the armband.

But the United boss hit back at critics and insisted that, despite Maguire's poor form, he will keep the captain's armband.

'No, I have not considered taking the captain's armband away from him,' Solskjaer said, via the club's website.

'He's been an absolute stalwart on and off the pitch for us since he came in and he's been a true leader in all aspects.

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Both Roy Keane (left) and Ian Wright (right) slammed Maguire's celebration at half-time on ITV
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'We've all been very happy with him and we will back him because he is such a top professional. He is going to prove those critics wrong.

'I know the so-called experts have their opinions, and that's their job to put their opinions across, but that's not something we have to worry too much about.

'As a true example of a Manchester United player, Harry is always there for his team and his country.'

United suffered humiliating league defeats before the international break. The Red Devils were mauled 5-0 by bitter rivals Liverpool in their own back yard before stumbling through derby day defeat by Manchester City.

But the manager will be hoping his side can bounce back against 17th-placed Watford on Saturday as his job hangs by a thread.

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The United boss insisted the centre-back (centre) would 'prove those critics wrong'

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