Harry Maguire’s mother Zoe has issued a statement in response to the negativity which has followed the England and Man Utd centre-back.
Centre-back Maguire has been struggling for game time at club level. Regardless, he featured in both England matches in the recent international break. In the 3-1 win in Scotland, though, he was subject to abuse from certain individuals, both before and after scoring an unfortunate own goal.
England boss Gareth Southgate came to the 30-year-old’s defence during the week, hitting out at the behaviour of some of Maguire’s critics. Three Lions goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale also launched an impassioned defence. Now, Maguire’s mother has added her voice to theirs.
“As a mum seeing the level of negative and abusive comments in which my son is receiving from some fans, pundits and the media is disgraceful. It’s totally unacceptable to any walk of life never mind someone who works his socks off for club and country,” the statement – posted on Instagram – begins. “I was there in the stand as usual. It’s not acceptable what’s been created, over nothing”.
“I understand that in the football world there are ups and downs, positives and negatives. But what Harry receives has gone far beyond ‘football’. For me seeing him go through what he’s going through is not ok”.
“I would hate to have to see any other parents or players go through this in the future, especially the young boys and girls breaking through the ranks today. Harry has a massive heart and it’s a good job. He’s mentally strong and can handle it as others might not be able too [sic]. I wish this sort of abuse on nobody!”
Southgate felt the need to address the treatment of Maguire despite goals from Phil Foden, Jude Bellingham and Harry Kane giving England victory at Hampden Park. “From a Scotland fan’s point of view, I get it and I have absolutely no complaints. But it is a consequence of ridiculous treatment of him for a long period of time, frankly,” the manager said.
“I think our fans recognized that ‘OK there might be a bit of heat from our supporters. But we’re not going to have others getting into him’. But it is a joke. I have never known a player to be treated the way he is – not from the Scottish fans but by our own commentators, pundits, whatever it is.
“They have created something that is beyond anything I have ever seen. He has been an absolute stalwart for us in the second most successful England team in decades and he’s been a key part of that”.
“I’ve talked about the importance of our senior players and every time he goes on the field the resilience he shows, the balls he shows is absolutely incredible. He’s a top player and we’re all with him and our fans were incredible with him tonight.”