Manchester United captain Harry Maguire explains why it was right call not to send him off for incident with Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi
Feb. 17, 2020
Harry Maguire insists he did not kick out at Michy Batshuayi in an incident where the Manchester United captain was perhaps lucky to escape punishment.
The defender was bundled to the floor by the Chelsea striker before he caught him with his studs.
Replays appeared to show Maguire extending his leg towards Batshuayi but no card was shown by referee Anthony Taylor and VAR did not intervene.
The England international explained what happened in the incident and felt the right decision was made.
He told Sky Sports: “I can see why. I felt like at the time, I knew I caught him but I felt like he was going to fall on me and my natural reaction was to straighten my leg to try and, if he was to fall on me, hold him up.
“Obviously, I’ve got studs on my boots and it probably looks worse on TV. It was my natural reaction. It wasn’t a kick out or any intent or anything like that. It was just my natural reaction to straighten my leg and if he was going to fall on me to just hold him up really.
“I knew I did catch him at the time and I think it was the right decision in the end.”
The defender was also asked if it was a worrying moment for him while VAR checked if he would be given a red.
Maguire replied: “Yeah definitely because I knew at the time I did catch him and I knew at the time I didn’t have any intent to hurt him or kick him. It was literally just a natural reaction to straighten my leg and it wasn’t a kick.
“Obviously, I’ve got studs on the end of my boot so it makes it a bit worse. I apologised to him and it was nice the referee saw sense.”
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Maguire went on to score Manchester United’s second as they won 2-0 at Stamford Bridge .
It was also his first league goal for the Red Devils since his £80million transfer from Leicester in the summer.
He added: “It’s been a long time. Obviously, I got the first goal against Tranmere but that was with my feet but no I’ve missed a lot of chances this year and knew it was a matter of time before I scored one.
“Bruno’s helped with the nice delivery and hopefully there’s many more to come between now and the end of the season.”
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