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27/04/2012 08:49

Papers: Evans doubtful

James Ducker writes in The Times...

Evans in race against time for derby clash
Manchester United are sweating on the fitness of Jonny Evans before Monday’s pivotal derby. The Northern Ireland centre half has not trained all week after suffering an injury during United’s 4-4 draw at home to Everton on Sunday and is a doubt for the short trip to face Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium. The type and extent of the problem was unclear last night but Evans was able to finish the game against Everton. Having formed a formidable partnership in central defence with Rio Ferdinand in the absence of the injured Nemanja Vidic, the potential loss of Evans for such a crucial game would be a huge blow to United. Chris Smalling, who has made only one start in the past two months, or Phil Jones, who has struggled for form of late, would most likely deputise if Evans is ruled out, although Sir Alex Ferguson is certain to give the player every opportunity to prove his fitness.

As well as battling for the Premier League title, The Sun claims Manchester City will rival United in the race to sign Belgian playmaker Eden Hazard, after manager Roberto Mancini expressed his interest in the 21-year-old during an interview with a French magazine. “I know him and have been following him for a long time,” Mancini revealed. “But he’s a player a lot of teams want.”

In the Express, England legend Peter Shilton says the outcome of Monday’s derby could hinge on the performance of David De Gea. The Three Lions stopper, who won a record 125 caps, believes the Spaniard faces an acid test of his abilities and temperament at the Etihad Stadium. “If De Gea can come through this and have a really good game it could clinch the title for Manchester United, and it could cement his progress.”

More:  Boss: City here to stayBlog: Reds ahead on experience | Reds plan pre-derby break

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