Out with the old, in with the new? Erik ten Hag may like to argue differently but this is not a policy he has endorsed. Perhaps out with the old, in with the used-before.
The Dutchman shocked fans of Manchester United - and probably Leicester - when he signed Jonny Evans on a one-year deal this summer. “If Evans is the answer, what is the question?” asked TNT Sports presenter Lynsey Hipgrave to pundits ahead of kick-off with Burnley on Saturday.
In the end, it was ‘who was the player of the match?' The 35-year-old marked his first United start in eight years with a glorious assist for Bruno Fernandes’ winner. “I know he [Evans] has great qualities playing the ball in behind with both feet so I knew he could give this pass so I was waiting for him,” said the goalscorer at full-time.
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The broadcasters gave the man of the match award to Fernandes but he courteously but rightly handed it over to Evans, who branded the evening “one of the best nights of my life”. There understandably would have been doubts about whether Evans would have been able to make an on-pitch impact upon his return.
Besides, Ten Hag had made it clear to Evans that, although he valued, he was coming in only as cover - something the Northern Irishman was happy to oblige to.
“His attitude and work ethic are second to none and Erik and the coaching staff know he’s someone they can rely on whenever needed this season,” said football director John Murtough when Evans’ full-time return had been announced on deadline day.
The news didn’t come totally out of the blue. Evans had travelled with United on theirRead on manchestereveningnews.co.uk