Manchester United are poised to accept an offer for Patrice Evra from Serie A side Juventus, as the veteran left-back wants to leave the club for family reasons.
According to Talksport, the Old Trafford club have agreed a £2million fee for the 33-year-old and that the transfer should be complete relatively soon. It also claims that that Manchester United were hopeful of Evra staying and overseeing the development of new signing Luke Shaw, but family reasons mean he wants to leave.
Evra leaving is mentioned as a possible route for Manchester United to take in securing a deal for Juventus midfielder Arturo Vidal, but the £2million would hardly make a dent in the price tag that has been mooted in some placed for the Chile international. Transfer fees between £32million and £50million have been mentioned in different places, but one thing that is certain is that Evra moving is unlikely to make a huge difference.
Transfer for the future
Signing Shaw for a record £27million was a positive step for the future of the position, however overpriced he may be, but it is only so if the Old Trafford squad had someone with a bit of experience in the position to guide him and fill in when bad form hits, while will happen to a young player.
The summer sale of Alexander Buttner and the release of Fabio da Silva has left Manchester United short in the left-back department, but that is not the only area. Evra’s imminent move to Serie A will be the second high-profile departure from the squad to see out their career in Italy.
Skipper has left
Club captain Nemanja Vidic left to join Inter Milan when his contract expired this summer and his partner in what will be considered one of the best centre-back duos in club history, Rio Ferdinand, has also left on a free transfer, though he is yet to officially agree a deal with a new club.
All these departures mean when Louis van Gaal will take up the hotseat at Old Trafford once his duties as Netherlands boss are finished, he will have a crisis of experience. All three of Ferdinand, Evra and Vidic may have seen the back of their best years, but there are few substitutes for the experience of a player that has been at the top of the game for years.
Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Jonny Evans can all play in central defence, but they have yet to hit the levels reached by that of Vidic and Ferdinand. Luke Shaw is obviously a supremely talented young player who will almost certainly become one of the leading full-backs in world football eventually, but moving to one of the biggest clubs in the world will be a daunting prospect for an 18-year-old.
Van Gaal can only take over next week at the earliest and that does not leave a great amount of time for him to get to know his squad, decide who he wants to keep, sell and how he wants them to play. Could there be more trouble ahead?