‘My conscience is clear - I did nothing wrong’: Harry Maguire tells his side to the story
In a BBC interview the Man Utd captain spoke about his arrest and trial in Greece
Manchester United captain Harry Maguire has spoken to the media for the first time since he was arrested on the Greek island of Mykonos last week.
The England defender claims that plain-clothed police officers, who did not identify themselves, pulled over his group’s minibus in Mykonos, threw him off the bus and struck him on his legs. He said he was “scared for his life” and feared he was about to be kidnapped.
On Tuesday the 27-year-old was found guilty of repeated bodily harm, attempted bribery, violence against public employees and insult after arrest.
After the trial he was handed a suspended sentence of 21 months and ten days in prison, which his legal team has appealed. The BBC reports that according to Greek law, the appeal “nullifies Maguire’s conviction and there will be a full retrial in a more senior court”.
In an exclusive interview with BBC sports editor Dan Roan, Maguire gave his side to the story in which he denied throwing punches or bribing the police.
Here’s what he had to say…
No apologies - I know the truth
“I don’t feel I owe an apology to anybody. An apology is something when you have done something wrong. 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.
“I know what happened that night. I know the truth. 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.”
Feared for his life
“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.”
“It was horrible. It was such a quick turnaround it was incredible. We got the pages for the transcript for the court on the evening before.
“A big document, all in Greek. I hardly had any chance to speak to my lawyer. We were confident the case would be adjourned, to give us more time to prepare and get the witnesses and the evidence that we have.
“For it to all happen so quickly... we obviously didn’t expect the trial to go ahead.”
The appeal process
“I have great faith in the Greek law. The retrial rule will give us more time to prepare, gather the evidence, allow witnesses into the court, and I am really confident the truth will be told and come out.”
Remaining United skipper
“It is such a huge honour to be captain of Manchester United - something I am really proud of. 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.”
“It’s not nice seeing bad reports against yourself. No-one knew what went off that night. Either you believe it or you don’t.
“Even after the court case still the stories coming out of the court case are so far away from the truth it is incredible. So, no, my character and personality will stay the same. I am strong mentally and I will get over this.
“My conscience is clear. I know exactly what happened that night.”