Harry Maguire admits he was ‘EMBARRASSED’ at Manchester United’s set-piece record with the club finally scoring from one after 139 attempts during their emphatic win over rivals Leeds United
- Harry Maguire admitted he was ’embarrassed’ at United’s failure from set pieces
- United scored from a set piece against Leeds United with Maguire heading home
- The club had previously gone 138 attempts without scoring from a set piece
- Marcelo Bielsa said ‘it’s impossible not to be worried’ about Leeds’ leaky defence
Harry Maguire had the good sense to keep his fingers out of his ears this time, which was just as well because his goal celebration in front of the Leeds fans did more than enough to stir the frenzy of emotion inside Elland Road.
The missiles rained down on Maguire and his teammates after the Manchester United captain headed his team in front and on course for an enthralling win over their old enemy from across the Pennines.
A son of a Sheffield, Maguire will know what this fixture means and he played like it in the face of foul conditions and an even fouler reception inside Elland Road.
Harry Maguire admitted he was ’embarrassed’ about United’s inability to score from set pieces
Another difficult week that brought more questions over his role as United captain ended with him bellowing triumphantly at the United supporters as they celebrated the clinching fourth goal.
Maguire’s opener was his first since November during an equally tough period when he was branded ‘a disgrace’ by Roy Keane for responding to criticism over his form by sticking a finger in each ear after heading England in front against Albania.
This goal was no less emphatic and even more notable for the fact that it was United’s first from a corner this season at the 139th attempt.
The club captain headed home from a corner against Leeds in what was United’s 139th attempt
‘Every time I see the stat, I’m embarrassed,’ admitted Maguire. ‘Set-pieces are a massive part of the game and we have been nowhere near good enough this season.’
It was a captain’s performance from Maguire when he and United needed one, and he praised his team for rising to a ferocious challenge from Leeds in the howling wind and rain.
‘The conditions in the second half were really bad. The half we were defending was really waterlogged,’ he added.
Anthony Elanga was hit by an object thrown by the Leeds crowd after United went 3-2 up
‘We had to fight, we had to stick together. We knew we had the quality to win the game. We spoke at half-time about the need to score more goals in the second half and we managed to do that.’
The United players were pelted with objects thrown from the crowd after Maguire’s goal and again when Fred made it 3-2, with Anthony Elanga requiring treatment for a head injury.
The FA are bound to investigate the incidents, while United’s interim manager Ralf Ragnick stepped onto the pitch to try and break up a 90th-minute melee following Junior Firpo’s challenge on Elanga.
Ralf Rangnick said ‘things like that should not happen but the atmosphere was great’
‘Obviously, things like that should not happen,’ Rangnick said about the missiles.
‘But the atmosphere was great, and at times we have to cool down things on the pitch. This is what I did when I walked onto the pitch. I didn’t want anything to happen – no yellow or red cards.’
Rangnick was surprised by the ferocity of the game and unhappy that referee Paul Tierney didn’t award a foul for Adam Forshaw’s challenge on Bruno Fernandes in the build-up to Leeds’ second goal.
Marcelo Bielsa said ‘It’s impossible not to be worried’ about how many goals Leeds have let in
‘There were quite a few tackles that in Germany there would have been no discussion whatsoever,’ he added.
‘I spoke to the referee after the game about that tackle on Bruno and said, “listen, in Germany, they wouldn’t have even asked VAR”. The referee said to me, quite funnily, “listen, this is probably why you had to come to England!”.’
A seventh defeat in 10 games in all competitions left Leeds in 15th place having conceded 50 goals.
Head coach Marcelo Bielsa said: ‘It’s impossible not to be worried. We have conceded 50 goals. Do you think I cannot be worried? How can I not feel responsible?’