In the latest Jonny Evans transfer news of the window, a second offer for West Brom centre-back from Manchester City has been rejected. Reports suggest the latest offer was for £23mil. Reluctant sellers West Brom are said to want closer to £30mil. Will Man City be able to pull off a deal in time?
We take a look at Jonny Evans’ situation and whether there’s a chance he could move…
Nationality: 63 caps 2 goals
Position: primarily a centre-back, can also defensive midfield or left-back
Reported Transfer Fee: £23mil
2016/17 League Stats: 30 starts (1 sub appearance) 2 goals (1 assist)
West Brom’s fine form last season was built on a defensive solidity. At times Pulis looks like one of the few managers who actually coaches defending in England, let alone prioritises it.
You get the impression that everybody knows their role at West Brom, with and without the ball. They keep a compact shape and usually manage to support each other with plenty of men behind the ball when out of possession.
There’s probably few clubs around better for a defender to flourish and Jonny Evans has been probably the best example of this.
His time at Man Utd was riddled with inconsistency, struggling to nail down a place in the first-team but at West Brom he’s established himself as arguably one of the better defenders, not that there’s a massive amount of competition around at the moment.
Jonny Evans has been a big part of West Brom’s rise whilst he has played just as big a role in the best period of Northern Irish football, certainly that I can remember.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that some of the big teams in the country are showing such firm interest. Arsenal are said to have been interested last summer and this. However I can’t help but be a little surprised by Man City’s interest in Evans. Not because of his ability but mainly he doesn’t fit the usual profile of recent signings by Pep. The home-grown squad quota could be a factor in Man City’s thinking.
I guess I’m just used to a fancy foreign import being the answer to most clubs’ problems these days in England. No one more so than Man City.
In terms of defending capabilities there aren’t that many better than Evans within the Man City squad in my opinion.
- Maybe Vincent Kompany but he’s become extremely injury prone.
- John Stones has undoubted potential but everyone has been talking about this potential for a long time now. He still seems to lacks some of the basics of defending whilst I’m not sure if he will ever have an instinct for danger.
- I’ve seen Otamendi put in man of the match performances at places like Old Trafford yet the next weekend look distinctly average. I just don’t know whether he is good enough for City’s aspirations at home or especially in Europe.
I doubt Pep. sees Evans as a first choice signing, instead I suspect Evans is being viewed as someone to add depth and use, at best, in rotation. However should he join Man City, Evans has a real chance to cement a place in the first team in my opinion.
Technically he’s not bad on the ball but the only thing which might prevent him getting the game-time he might otherwise deserve, is he may not be up to Guardiola’s high standards with his distribution.
Jonny Evans would be a big lost for West Brom, unsurprisingly they want a replacement. Mangala has been mentioned as a possible inclusion in the deal on loan.
Mangala had a bit of a hard time in his last stint in England, really struggling to impress but he has shown, particularly with Porto in the past, that he is far from a bad player. He has 8 French caps which is no mean feat. With a consistent run of games I’m sure he could be an asset to any team. The pressure at West Brom is nothing like the same at Man City so that may allow him to play his natural game. Mangala would also benefit from the extra protection the defence tends to get at West Brom.
However I understand Mangala prefers a move to Inter Milan. I have my doubts he’d want to join West Brom.
There’s also talk of Mamadou Sakho possibly joining from Liverpool. West Brom will have money to play with if Evans is sold and Sakho is proven as a good Premiership defender. Crystal Palace look like favourites however as they try and bring him back to London which is believed to be Sakho’s preferred location.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) 18 August 2017
The above quote from Guardiola doesn’t bode well but it hasn’t stopped Man City from making several offers since. The only stumbling block so far seems to be West Brom’s asking price but it’s hard to see a club with City’s financial resources failing to sign a player they want due to a disagreement over a few million. West Brom may also want to sort a replacement so time is tight to finalise a deal.
The fact Evans is an ex-Man Utd player won’t help endear him to City fans but I expect he feels like he has some unfinished business from his previous time in Manchester and at the highest levels of the game. I expect he thought an opportunity to play for a club like Man City in the Champion’s League wouldn’t come around again. It might be too tempting to reject. I doubt we will see Evans kick up a fuss though (like Coutinho) so it will come down to West Brom’s response to City’s upcoming offers (if they arrive)
I expect they will and I also expect one to be accepted and that we will end up seeing Evans in Man City shirt by the end of the transfer window.
What do you think? Are Man City crazy to want Evans? Am I crazy to believe he has a chance to actually become an important player for City? Leave your comments below.