Louis van Gaal’s decision to sell the defender on the cheap in 2015 has proved to be misguided
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes Leicester City centre-back Jonny Evans should still be at Old Trafford.
Solskjaer was still a United player when the Northern Ireland defender was a prized prospect in the club’s academy, making his senior debut in 2007.
Evans played more than 200 games for United before he was sold to West Brom in 2015 for £8 million, eventually joining Leicester in 2018.
What was said?
“You know, Jonny Evans should have been a Manchester United player now, of course,” Solskjaer said ahead of his side’s FA Cup quarter-final against Leicester on Sunday.
“But sometimes football takes you other places when changes in management happen.
“I’m sure that Jonny Evans has feelings for Manchester United and we have feelings for him too.
“So it is a pleasure to see him playing as well as he does and we just have to move on.
“But of course, local lads – I call them local lads, you know what I mean – we want to build our next youth team on players like Jonny Evans, if you like.
“With Mason Greenwood, Scott McTominay and Dean Henderson and all of the lads, added on with top quality players of course.”
The bigger picture
Evans has been one of the Premier League’s most dependable centre-backs since leaving United in 2015, making Louis van Gaal’s decision to sell him on the cheap appear misguided.
United’s massive outlays on transfer fees for central defenders since Evans left only serves to underline that error, as Harry Maguire, Eric Bailly and Victor Lindelof have cost a combined £144m ($200m).
Maguire has established himself as a clear starter in the heart of United’s defence, but there is plenty of talk that Solskjaer’s side could spend big on another defender this summer.