Harry Maguire playing for Manchester United

Evans: I knew Maguire would become United captain

Thursday 23 July 2020 16:00

Former Manchester United defender Jonny Evans has said he always knew Harry Maguire would thrive at Old Trafford, and even revealed he tipped him to claim the captain’s armband after his transfer.

Maguire, of course, left Evans’s current employers Leicester City last summer to join the Reds, and was appointed permanent skipper in January following Ashley Young’s departure to Internazionale.

While Jonny wasn’t surprised to see his old defensive partner become captain, even he was impressed by the speed at which Harry’s leadership qualities had come to the fore at Old Trafford.
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MUTV Group Chat: Jonny Evans

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“When Harry signed for the club he had a decision where to go. I told him to go to United because it was the perfectly made club for him,” the Northern Ireland international revealed during his appearance in today's MUTV Group Chat, which you can watch in full above.

“I said that within a year at the club that he’d be captain and when he got given the captaincy I text him and said: ‘That was quicker than what I expected!’. I think he’s got the perfect personality for it.

“If you look at Harry, he never gets injured, he’s played all season and I think he’s been a really good signing for United.”
Maguire and Evans will have something of a reunion this weekend when United and Leicester lock horns at the King Power Stadium.

It will be a huge occasion for both sides on the final day of the season, with the winner guaranteed a spot in next season’s Champions League, although United only need a draw to confirm our spot in the top four.

“A lot of things do go down to the last game and now it’s come down to ourselves and United,” said Evans.

“We had a couple of days off after the last game against Spurs. It’s probably the first time we’ve had that chance with the games coming so thick and fast.
Jonny and Harry will again come face-to-face this weekend in Leicester.
"Obviously, United haven’t had the chance to do that with the FA Cup fixture at the weekend. It’s been nice for us to have those two days away, especially after we lost at the weekend.

“There’s no pressure on us!” Jonny added, with a cheeky grin. “I think there’s going to be more pressure on Man United and Chelsea with the history of the clubs in terms of qualifying and the expectations.”

There’s more than a foot in both camps for this weekend’s clash, given that Jonny’s wife Helen is a huge United supporter and, of course, works for the club.

“I had a little pop at her recently because she was writing things on Twitter and linking to United things,” the centre-back chuckled. “I said: ‘Well, who are you supporting at the minute?’. It’s a no-lose situation for her I suppose.”
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Evans is enjoying perhaps the best season of his career so far and, while too modest to admit this, he did acknowledge that his performances have become more reliable with age and experience.

“I feel as you get older you probably get more consistent,” he said. “Injury-wise it’s probably my best season. I don’t think I’ve missed a day of training or a game. Maybe, as a defender, as you get older the mistakes go out the window a bit more and you become a bit more sure of yourself.

“From a mentality point of view, you can deal with making mistakes better. You get over it quicker in a game. Those things have probably contributed to me playing my most consistent football. 

“I had my time at United and I had a great time,” he added on his extended stint as a Red. “There were some really enjoyable experiences and I look back at it so fondly. I think any ex-player does - just to say you’ve played for Man United is incredible.”

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