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“We are in talks”- Erik ten Hag says he wants 35-year-old to stay at Man United

Manchester United defender Jonny Evans idolized former captain Roy Keane during his childhood days as a young United fan.
Manchester United defender Jonny Evans idolized former captain Roy Keane during his childhood days as a young United fan. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag reveals contract talks are ongoing with Jonny Evans

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has revealed that the club is currently engaged in talks with Jonny Evans regarding a potential contract extension.

This could result in the defender remaining with the team for the upcoming 2023-24 season.

After being released by Leicester City in late June, the Northern Ireland international started pre-season training with United.

Subsequently, he agreed to a short-term contract with the club to participate in friendly matches against Lyon and Wrexham.

Manchester United centre-back Jonny Evans set to receive a new contract proposal (Photo by PAUL FAITH/AFP via Getty Images)
Manchester United centre-back Jonny Evans set to receive a new contract proposal (Photo by PAUL FAITH/AFP via Getty Images)

Evans remained part of the team following the Wrexham game in the United States.

The 35-year-old was included in the lineup for the final pre-season match against Borussia Dortmund during the club’s tour and also played against Athletic Bilbao in their last friendly fixture of the summer.

Harry Maguire is now confirmed to remain at Man United, forming part of the quartet of senior centre-backs at the club, which also includes Lisandro Martinez, Raphael Varane, and Victor Lindelof.

Yet, it was expected that Evans might be offered a contract extension until the following June. And now the manager has expressed his desire to retain the veteran defender at Old Trafford.

As quoted by the club’s official website (h/t Fabrizio Romano), the Dutch boss said:

“We will see. We are in talks and when we have news, we will bring that, as always. In this moment, [he’s] not [under a long-term contract]. I have to say, it’s a short [deal] for this month, he’s under contract. But we are talking.”

Ten Hag’s trust is there to see, and the veteran defender has rightly earned it through his dedicated performances over the years.

Evans, who has earned 102 caps for Northern Ireland, progressed through United’s youth system and made his senior debut in 2006.

Jonny Evans has left a positive impression on Erik ten Hag after recent performances for Man United (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
Jonny Evans has left a positive impression on Erik ten Hag after recent performances for Man United (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

He went on to accumulate 198 appearances for the club, securing three Premier League titles, two League Cups, four Community Shields, and the Club World Cup.

Afterwards, he spent three years at West Bromwich Albion before joining Leicester, where he made 152 appearances and won the FA Cup.

Last season, the defender struggled with fitness issues, resulting in only 13 Premier League appearances. During his time at Old Trafford, Evans evidently made a good impression on Ten Hag and his coaching staff.

His leadership and experience have positioned him as a wise addition with the potential to contribute positively to the team.

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Man United presently boasts four senior centre-backs, with Martinez and Varane continuing to be the top choices. Nevertheless, Evans might provide valuable senior backup and also be a mentor to the younger players in the squad.

In our opinion, mature, older players are the pillars of support that are needed if the team wants to taste success in the long term.

Written by Roland Cutinho

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