Why Jonny Evans is the perfect centre-back partner for Harry Maguire
Leicester City were unable to get past a rigid Manchester United that won 2-1 against the Foxes on the opening day of the Premier League. Claude Puel rested a number of his team’s leading stars and that showed in their performance. Jamie Vardy scored within minutes of coming on but had he started, things could have ended differently.
The manager also decided to keep new defensive recruitment Jonny Evans on the bench. The former West Bromwich Albion defender joined the Foxes for a fee of around £3.5million on a three-year deal (h/t BBC). The centre-back will certainly provide the club with defensive solidity as they must return to their best ways.
Claude Puel opted to go with a Harry Maguire-Wes Morgan pairing in the loss against United, but perhaps the manager should choose Evans to partner Maguire in the next game. After all, Evans is a defensively resilient and reliable man at the back.
He possesses a vast amount of experience in the English Premier League, having plied his trade with Manchester United during his early days. An able defender and authoritative presence at the back, Evans could be a leader for the Foxes in the defence. He would also prove to be an important voice of motivation in the dressing room.
Evans is a calm and composed defender who is rarely prone to making mistakes. The centre-back seems to have gotten better with age. Despite being 30, Evans played some of his best football for the Baggies over the last two seasons. He was a sentinel in the defence, alongside Ahmed Hegazi.
One of the greatest qualities Evans possesses is the ability to gel alongside any centre-back. Evans immediately builds a strong and understanding relationship with his partner which naturally tightens things up at the back.
Harry Maguire has been making headlines since his move to Leicester City last season and one can only imagine the bond the pair could strike up. Both are tough-tackling English defenders who are very hard to beat.
Like Maguire, Evans also poses a massive threat from set-pieces. He’s strong in the air and made a number of vital headed clearances for the Baggies last season. West Brom scored the most number of goals from set-pieces last season and Evans played a major part in that.
As the Foxes look for their first win of the season against newly-promoted Wolverhampton Wanderers next, Claude Puel should certainly start Jonny Evans. The former Manchester United defender will be a commanding presence at the back for the Foxes, making them a hard team to breach.