Maguire: Our fans have a big part to play
Manchester United fans have a ‘big part to play’ in our pursuit of success this season, says club captain Harry Maguire.
With Leeds United coming to Old Trafford in the Reds’ opening Premier League fixture of the season, the atmosphere at the Theatre of Dreams will be raucous, deafening and hopefully inspiring.
Some players in the current United squad – Edinson Cavani one of them – have never experienced the feeling of a full Old Trafford behind them. Maguire, though, made 25 appearances at home during his first season at the club, all but five of them played before the COVID-19 pandemic and before games were moved behind-closed-doors.
Those 20 games clearly made an impression, with Maguire effusive in his praise of match-going Reds.
“I think the fans are going to have a big part to play,” the captain told us.
“I can only speak on my first season at United where the atmosphere they created was amazing, not just at Old Trafford but away from home, they sing non-stop and follow us in their numbers and we really feel their support.
“I feel like we have the best fans in the country and I’m sure they’ll have a part to play this season and I can’t wait for them to experience being at Old Trafford again.”
Fans returned for the first time in mid-May, when 10,000 fortunate supporters watched Cavani’s magnificent lob against Fulham. Crowds were bolstered for our two home friendlies in pre-season with 30,000 watching an entertaining 2-2 draw against Brentford and 55,000 in attendance for a 4-0 win against Everton.
When Leeds come on Saturday, a full stadium will watch Maguire lead United out. It’ll be a poignant and emotional moment for many, but soon the drama – which so many football fans across the world, not just supporters of United or Leeds, are eagerly anticipating – will take over. Then the noise will come.
“I can’t wait,” Maguire said of Saturday’s game. “I know what a full Old Trafford can do and the atmosphere it creates and the extra push and drive it will give us as players, so I can’t wait to have them back, both at Old Trafford and in the away end too.”
Read more from Harry in Saturday's matchday programme, United Review. Order your copy now.
It has been a long and often painful wait for the return of full stadiums in English football. That moment we have all longed for is finally here, and the players, led by Maguire, cannot wait to see thousands of faces around the Theatre of Dreams again, to see the audience they live to entertain and inspire.
In a message to the fans, our skipper added: “Stick with us. We’re super happy to have you back at Old Trafford and supporting us, and we can’t wait to play in front of everyone again. We hope we can have a good season together and we thank you for all your support.”