Patrice Evra is expected to make his final appearance for Manchester United today, as the Reds travel to Southampton for their last game of the season, with the 32-year-old seemingly poised to join Nemanja Vidic at Inter Milan next season.
Evra’s contract runs out at the end of the season and while he’s been a virtually ever present figure this season, David Moyes’ long and ultimately fruitless pursuit of Leighton Baines had made clear that the Frenchman was no longer going to be the club’s first choice left-back, after eight seasons at Old Trafford.
As it turned out, Evra outstayed Moyes at United but he might be on his way this summer, with United eyeing a £27m for Southampton left-back Luke Shaw as a replacement for the man who’s not only one of the best defenders to have ever put on a red shirt but he’s also a player whose love affair with the fans has been incredibly intense.
Patrice Evra loves playing for Manchester United and is one of the few European players to have fully grasped what it means to play for United but he’s been a defensive liability for the last few seasons and it’s sensible of United to decide to bring a new left-back, though the decision to let Evra leave is somewhat more puzzling.
United could have taken an option to resign Evra, while he could have also triggered a new contract after making a certain number of appearances, but both parties seem to have agreed to part ways at the end of the season, the Telegraph reports. Considering that Fabio was sold to Cardiff and that Alex Buttner is utterly unpresentable at this level, Evra would have been an important figure to retain at the club, particularly given his importance in the dressing room.
Meanwhile, Ryan Giggs has stressed the importance of keeping the Class of 92 at the club in some sort of role. Giggsy has been offered a job as Louis Van Gaal’s assistant manager, but he maintains it’s important the club doesn’t get rid of Phil Neville, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes, figures the players look up to.
“It is a decision for the new manager and something he definitely has to consider,” said Giggs.
I would say there are more plus points than minus points with what the lads bring. They know the culture and the history and the way the club is run. It can definitely be a plus. Ultimately, it is down to the new manager.”
Giggs has also confirmed Ed Woodward has been asking suggestions about transfers.
“Ed has asked at different times ‘what do you think about this’ or ‘what do you think about that’. That is part of my job as I see them day-in day-out,” said Giggs, who admitted he still hasn’t made his mind up about the future.
“It would be strange, but I’ve got a little taste of it and the last couple of weeks is a pretty good apprenticeship. I’m at a stage where it’s an option.
“I’m open to so many things but I’ve got to seriously think about it and that’s what I’ll do; whether to still play, whether to stay here, whether to go somewhere else, whether to chill out for a year and take a step back as I’ve been in football since I left school.”