Manchester United centre back, Jonny Evans, has provided his backing to coach, Erik ten Hag, despite a poor run of form which has seen the team lose exactly 50% of their matches this season.
After a season of optimism last year which saw Ten Hag win the Carabao cup, reach the final of the FA Cup and finish third in the league, this season has been a severe reality check for the Red Devils.
The Northern Irishman’s comments were relayed by Swedish outlet, www.fotbollskanalen.se.
Speaking after the latest deflating result and performance, the academy graduate, who was a surprise free agent signing this summer, claimed “he is a fantastic coach and I have no doubts about him”.
The Dutchman’s job has been subject to much speculation recently, so any public backing from an experienced member of the squad is probably greatly appreciated.
The defender sympathised with the injury plight that the manager has faced and pointed to January as an opportunity to remedy this. He claimed, “in January we get a new window and a chance to improve the team. Not playing in Europe will give him more time”.
Supporters will hope the club share Evans’ stance on January signings. There have been mixed messages about whether United can spend this winter market. Ten Hag has played down the possibility but transfer expert, Fabrizio Romano has been more positive about expenditure.
It highlights the health woes the club has suffered when Evans himself was brought in as emergency back up and many assumed a fifth choice centre back at best after Lisandro Martinez, Raphael Varane, Victor Lindelof and Harry Maguire. And despite the Ulsterman suffering his own injuries, he has already played 11 times this season and we haven’t even reached Christmas yet.
The 35 year old stressed, “we’ve had a tough period but hopefully we’ll get players back from injuries and get more consistency in the team. It would be good for him”.
The centre back also used his post-match interview to admit that the team didn’t have the answers to their inconsistencies but promised fans that they would do their best to find them.
When asked what United need to do, he replied, “I do not know. I don’t have the answer to that. We all have a desire to get better as a team, and it is our responsibility as players to succeed in that. We must continue”.
Whilst the man from Belfast recognised that results cannot hide the infuriating inconsistency of the team, he did try and give fans something to hang on to.
When commenting on recent matches, he mentioned, “it shows where we are as a team, but the positive thing is that we know we can achieve good results”.
Evans, like all United fans, will be hoping just for once, the Red Devils can get one of these good results at Anfield in the massive showdown this Sunday afternoon.