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Saturday, April 13, 2024

Rio Ferdinand believes it was ‘a travesty’ that Man United sold defender under Louis van Gaal

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Man United icon, Rio Ferdinand, believes it was a mistake to let Jonny Evans leave under Louis van Gaal.

Manchester United Football Club have been undergoing major change ever since Sir Alex Ferguson hung up the clipboard – both on and off the field. It’s fair to say the powers that be are yet to find the recipe for success. Hence, Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS now have control of footballing operations.

The Manchester derby over the weekend proved that United are still some way off the pace. It’s going to take time for the new owners to work their magic.

Over the summer, the decision to bring back Jonny Evans was the latest in the line of eyebrow-raising decisions, though to be fair to the Northern Irishman, he has more than played his part.

The 36-year-old left the club in 2015, before sensationally being brought back eight years later. I bet even he thought he’d never make a return to his beloved Old Trafford.

Now, a former teammate of his, Rio Ferdinand, has admitted he believes it was ‘a travesty’ he was let go at that time, as he was sold under Louis van Gaal when the Dutch manager was trying to put his own stamp on the squad. Rio also reckons Chris Smalling should not have been sold to AS Roma in 2019.

Here’s what Rio Ferdinand had to say on the transfer decisions in full here:

“I’ve said this many times, it was a travesty that they sold Jonny Evans,” said Ferdinand on his FIVE YouTube channel. “He should never have been allowed to leave. He was the best defender, the best centre back, when I left. When me and Vidic walked out of the door, the experience, the old timers, we were gone, he was the best defender that you’ve got. I just couldn’t believe that he was allowed to leave – him and Chris Smalling, to be fair.”

“I don’t believe they should have been allowed to leave, I thought they knew the fabric of the club. You need those types,”

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, right? I understand that the club were undergoing major change at both those junctures and an argument can be made that both should have stayed.

It’s easy to forget that Evans was out of the side when the club chose to let him go. Though nobody would have begrudged him a place in the squad as a rotational option. Ironically, he’s doing that job wonderfully well right now.

Evans truly has been rolling back the years this season, putting in some truly brilliant displays. He actually played pretty well in the derby yesterday, against an Erling Haaland who we know is one of the best in the business.

I personally take a greater issue with the decision to let Smalling leave. At the time, he was playing semi-regularly, as he was one of the most experienced and senior defenders at the club. United received a very minimal transfer fee for the Englishman, who went on to star for an excellent AS Roma side where he’s still flourishing even now.

Do you think Jonny Evans has played his part this season? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below.

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