FOOTBALL NEWS

21/12/2012 16:27, Report by B Hibbs & N Coppack
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Evans can rule for years

Jonny Evans is keen to avoid feeling too settled, despite having just signed a new contract at Old Trafford, and yet Sir Alex Ferguson believes this is one step towards another decade at United for the Northern Irish defender. 

Evans penned a new deal on Friday, which keeps him tied at the club until June 2016. Even though he believes this is "the place that I want play", he is taking nothing for granted.

“It's nice to get a new contract,” he told ManUtd.com and PA Sport. “It does give you extra security but the club could still decide to sell me in the summer if they want! I don't think it means an awful lot these days.

"But I'm delighted with it. It gives me the security that I need. It's the place that I want to play. I love the club. It's 10 years since I moved across the water to join this club and I am delighted to extend my stay.”

The 24-year-old is fast approaching 150 appearances for United since making his debut five years ago and Sir Alex feels the opportunity is there for Evans to dominate at the heart of the Reds’ defence for years to come.

“He's played 141 games for us and that's more or less established in my eyes,” says the boss. “But he's still a young centre-back and should play for the next 10 years. Hopefully that's at United.” 

Evans can reflect on his best year yet in a United shirt as 2012 marked a coming of age for the Belfast-born defender.

“Jonny was at the school of excellence in Belfast and has been with us ages,” the boss added. “He always had that talent. In fact, when he was a youngster I wasn't sure if he was a midfielder or centre back as he's such a good footballer. But I think he fought his way into that [position] last year. When he and Rio played consistently our results improved.”

No United centre-back has made more appearances than Evans in the last 18 months and that has been key to his development and fine form.

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