Harry Maguire: Manchester United captain misses pre-Europa League final training session

Harry Maguire has not trained in Manchester United’s final session before the Europa League final.

The United club captain has travelled to Gdansk as part of the 26-man squad for Wednesday’s match against Villarreal, for which the final round of preparations will take place on Tuesday evening.

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Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had initially been upbeat about Maguire returning to skipper the side in the final, only for that positivity to wane last week despite the defender coming off his crutches.

“Harry is just going to jog up and down the sideline, I reckon,” the United boss said in his pre-match press conference.

“He’ll probably try to join in (training) a little, but apart from that we’re looking quite good.”


Yet within an hour it was clear that Maguire would be taking no part in Tuesday’s session.

The defender, who was named in England’s provisional 33-man squad for the European Championships earlier in the day, headed to the dugout rather than the pitch as his team-mates started training.

Solskjaer went over to him 15 minutes into the session, before the United boss returned to the main group as a forlorn Maguire watched on.

Anthony Martial and Phil Jones did not travel with the squad due to injury, with Solskjaer facing some big selection decisions, including whether to start David de Gea or Dean Henderson in goal.

“It’s always difficult to leave players out but a final is a reward for what you’ve done over the whole season,” he said.

“Then, if there’s a doubt between a couple of players it comes down to the form in the latter stages. We’ll enjoy the last training session and the players will get the team tomorrow.”

For Solskjaer, the Europa League final represents the opportunity for a unique achievement – playing a key role in European trophy successes for Manchester United as both a player and a manager.

The Norwegian embedded his name in United folklore by scoring the winning goal in the 2-1 Champions League final victory over Bayern Munich in 1999 but says personal glory is not on his radar this week.

“I don’t even think about that,” he said. “I’m always looking forward and thinking about the next decision, making the right decision for the club.

“I never think about my CV, never. I think about making sure the players are ready. If you have to make decisions tomorrow, then you do it.

“I’ll speak to the subs and tell them they might have to play a big part. Players can be disappointed, they can be angry with me but they should enjoy it because you don’t play too many finals in your life.”

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