HARRY MAGUIRE will keep the Manchester United captaincy after his suspended prison sentence was set aside on appeal.
Maguire, 27, was convicted of repeated bodily harm, violence against public officials and attempted bribery by a Greek court.
But United insisted last night that Maguire’s appeal against this week’s verdict means that his sentence is now on hold for three years.
The player was stunned by the outcome of his case, when he was handed a suspended prison sentence of 21 months and ten days for his part in a fight with police on the holiday island of Mykonos last week.
But yesterday’s appeal means the conviction is nullified until a full retrial is held in a more senior court.
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A United statement said: “An appeal against this week’s verdict has been lodged by Harry’s legal team which means he has no criminal record and is once again presumed innocent until proven guilty.
“Accordingly, he is not subject to any international restrictions.”
United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is determined to stand by his captain, who claimed that last Thursday’s fracas was the result of two strangers trying to inject his sister, Daisy, with a date-rape drug.
The problem for United is that it is likely to be more than a year before the retrial takes place which means Maguire could have the criminal charges hanging over his head for the entire season.
Maguire, older brother Joe and family friend Christoper Sharman all continue to maintain their innocence despite this week’s verdict.
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But their lack of contrition has not gone unnoticed in Mykonos, where prosecuting lawyer Dr Ioannis Paradissis has called for the defender to make a public apology.
Dr Paradissis, who represented two of the six police officers involved in the case, said: “There is still time for the defendants to say they are sorry and then I believe the outcome might be different because under Greek law you can withdraw some of the accusations.
“My clients have told me that they are still waiting for an apology and this is what I find quite shocking and unsportsmanlike because fair play means that when I’ve done something wrong, I apologise.
“Obviously the claims about the sister being injected is irrelevant concerning the assault committed against the police officers.
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“In any case, what is strange about this case is that the sister was interviewed by the police and said nothing about that.
“This is a new line of defence that we have only heard recently.”
But Maguire’s younger brother Laurence, who plays for Chesterfield, took to social media to declare: “Absolutely no chance Harry will be apologising.
“Daisy and no-one in the group was even interviewed by the police.”