Former Man United defender offers Harry Maguire support after criticism and bomb scare

Mikael Silvestre has strongly condemned the horrifying bomb threat made to Harry Maguire and his family last week.

The Manchester United captain, who has two daughters, received the scare via email on Thursday, and contacted police who conducted a search throughout his home with specialist dogs. Thankfully, nothing untoward was found.

But Ralf Rangnick decided to start Maguire on the bench for the 3-1 loss to Arsenal on Saturday after a “tough week” that began with a 4-0 loss to Liverpool. The 29-year-old has been subjected to fierce criticism by many onlookers for his perceived sub-par displays this season.

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This included booing from England fans during last months’ international break, something that was condemned by Gareth Southgate and Three Lions teammates. Maguire played well for his country against the Ivory Coast but attitudes turned sour again once he returned to Old Trafford.

Former United defender Silvestre — who won four league titles and a Champions League with the club — said the bomb scare was “very sad” and stressed that football is not the most important thing in life. He told Genting Casino: “Football is first of all a game; it’s entertainment and it should be fun.

“There is no room for this type of behaviour. There is a war happening in Europe and we have these types of people bringing this type of behaviour to footballers?

“It should not happen. It’s very sad for football and it’s worrying for Harry because at the end of the day he is just doing his job. I really condemn what happened to him. It is very bad.”

Maguire is not the only defender to have been questioned this season. Raphael Varane has been stricken with injuries since his arrival from Real Madrid last year and has failed to find any consistency.

Silvestre said it has been a “difficult season” for Varane but isn’t worried about his future at United. On his fellow Frenchman, he added: “He has what it takes to be the leader of the United defence.

“Individually, he is more than capable of stepping up and being one of the top defenders next season under the new manager.”

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