Manchester United are said to be ‘close’ to confirming a one-year contract with Jonny Evans.
At 35 years old, Evans is set to be available this summer as his tenure at Leicester City is due to conclude by the end of June. Previously, there were whispers about his potential move to Merseyside club Everton.
The seasoned player began his pre-season drills at Carrington in July, even taking part in four friendly matches against Lyon, Wrexham, Borussia Dortmund, and Athletic Bilbao, thanks to a brief agreement.
During a recent press briefing, Manchester United’s gaffer, Erik ten Hag, unveiled discussions about a potential deal with the Northern Irish stalwart.
Evans, during his Old Trafford stint, is thought to have deeply impressed Ten Hag and his team, mainly due to his commendable leadership on the pitch.
Per reports from The Sun, the adept backliner is gearing up to ink a deal effective until the upcoming June. This arrangement could potentially see Harry Maguire pushed to the position of a fifth-option centre-back at Old Trafford.
Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez currently hold the prime centre-back slots, closely followed by Victor Lindelof. Speculations suggest that Evans might be slotted just ahead of Maguire.
Despite this, Ten Hag, on Friday, vocalised his desire to retain Maguire at Old Trafford. A proposed shift to West Ham United did not come to fruition. Yet, Maguire’s quest for consistent playtime might still prompt a move before the summer transfer window shuts
Meanwhile, Eric Bailly, the Ivorian international, doesn’t feature in Ten Hag’s plans and is anticipated to change clubs soon.
Addressing queries about Evans’ immediate future on Friday, Ten Hag stated, “At this juncture, he’s not formally under contract. However, based on last month’s brief agreement, he is. Nonetheless, negotiations are underway.” Probing further about Evans’ retention, Ten Hag confirmed, “Absolutely, or we wouldn’t be discussing.”
Emerging from Manchester United’s youth ranks, Evans had an impactful stint, donning the Red Devils jersey 198 times from 2006 to 2015. His journey then took him to West Bromwich Albion, followed by a switch to Leicester City in 2018. Here, he tallied 152 caps for the Foxes, with 14 of those in the previous season, concluding with his exit from the King Power Stadium.
On another note, Manchester United are rumoured to be scouting for an additional central midfielder. However, a potential deal might hinge on the transfer of Donny van de Beek.