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Harry Maguire joins Man United for world-record fee

Harry Maguire says he is delighted with the "incredible opportunity" to play for Man United, after the club agreed to pay Leicester a world-record fee for a defender.

Harry Maguire joins Man United for world-record fee
Manchester United Manchester United via Getty Imag

Manchester United have announced the signing of Harry Maguire from Leicester for a reported £80 million, setting a new world-record fee for a defender.

The club confirmed that Maguire has signed a six-year contract with the option to extend for a further year, after the Old Trafford board finally agreed to meet Leicester’s asking price.

The £80 million paid for Maguire surpasses the previous record held by Dutch centre back Virgil van Dijk, who joined Liverpool for £75 million in January, 2018.

United were in early competition with local rivals Manchester City for the England defender’s signature. But City eventually pulled out of the race, with coach Pep Guardiola admitting after the Community Shied on Sunday that the club “could not afford” the 26-year-old.

Maguire comes in to further strengthen United’s defence following the signing of Arron Wan Bissaka from Crystal Palace for £45 million in June – bringing the club’s total summer spend on defensive acquisitions to £125 million.

Maguire delighted with “incredible opportunity”

“I am delighted to have signed for this great club. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Leicester and would like to thank everyone at the club, and the fans, for their fantastic support over the past two seasons. However, when Manchester United come knocking on your door, it is an incredible opportunity,” said Maguire.

”From my conversations with the manager, I am excited about the vision and plans he has for the team. It’s clear to see that Ole is building a team to win trophies. I am now looking forward to meeting my new team-mates and getting the season started.”

Solskjaer: Maguire will fit in well at Man United

United coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will hope that the signing of Maguire will go some way in addressing the club’s glaring issues at the back, which caused his side to concede the second highest number of goals (54) in the top half of the Premier League table last season.

“Harry is one of the best centre-backs in the game today and I am delighted we have secured his signature,” said Solskjaer.

“He is a great reader of the game and has a strong presence on the pitch, with the ability to remain calm under pressure - coupled with his composure on the ball and a huge presence in both boxes - I can see he will fit well into this group both on and off the pitch.”

Following the confirmation, Maguire now looks set to make his debut for United in their crunch opening Premier League tie against Chelsea on Sunday.