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Jonny Evans Talks 'Fantastic' Harry Maguire; Makes Virgil van Dijk Comparison

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistAugust 13, 2019

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - AUGUST 11: Harry Maguire of Manchester United at full time of the Premier League match between Manchester United and Chelsea FC at Old Trafford on August 11, 2019 in Manchester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images)
Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

Jonny Evans has hailed Harry Maguire as a "fantastic player" and compared his former Leicester City team-mate to Virgil van Dijk following his record-breaking move to Manchester United.  

Maguire, 26, recently broke Van Dijk's record as the most expensive defender in football when he joined United for £80 million. However, Evans took attention away from his transfer fee and said the Englishman's talent will do the talking, per The Independent's Nick Mashiter:

"You can see comparisons in their games [Maguire and Van Dijk], both are great on the ball, and Harry has got explosive pace people don't see.

"He is powerful, good in the air. ... Everyone will compare the transfer fees but it's so difficult to judge transfer fees nowadays. We are all human. and it is weird we get traded for money. In the transfer market it's all supply and demand, and things can go up and down at any moment.

"The most important thing is for him to be judged on how he plays. I don't have any worries about him there."

Evans, 31, left Old Trafford in 2015 following an 11-year stay with United. He spent three years at West Bromwich Albion before joining Leicester last year under the management of fellow Northern Irishman Brendan Rodgers.

Evans added of Maguire: "He is tailor-made for Man United. It was a great move for him. He's a player they needed. He's got a really likeable nature about him. He will be a real hit there. He is a fantastic player."

United kept only two clean sheets at home in the Premier League last season, but they began their 2019-20 campaign by hammering Chelsea 4-0 at Old Trafford on Sunday.

Maguire was named man of the match for his performance at the back despite Marcus Rashford scoring two goals and Paul Pogba assisting twice:

Harry Maguire @HarryMaguire93

Debut ✅🕺 3 Points ✅🕺 Clean Sheet ✅🕺 https://t.co/nCsFKV8g9v

Evans was one of numerous defenders to be tested on United's carousel of centre-backs in modern times. Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic set a high standard in central defence for the club until they departed in 2014, and the Red Devils have lacked elite alternatives since then.

England star Maguire has already demonstrated the necessary talent, but he also continues to exemplify the winning mentality that led United to sign him, via Sky Sports:

Van Dijk took Liverpool to the UEFA Champions League final within six months of arriving at Anfield and won the European crown in May following his first full season with the club. Reds manager Jurgen Klopp also made other improvements to his squad in that time, however, and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is looking to do the same.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka has already improved the club at the right-back spot, while 21-year-old winger Daniel James came off the bench to score a debut goal against Chelsea.

Former Chelsea forward Chris Sutton recently appeared on BBC 5 Live Sport and described Maguire's transfer as great business:

BBC 5 Live Sport @5liveSport

‘All things being equal, Harry Maguire is a sensational signing’ @chris_sutton73 says @HarryMaguire93 could not have had a better start at #MUFC 🎧Listen to the Football Daily👇 ⚽️📲https://t.co/X4R5uT0Ykb #bbcfootball https://t.co/UFx5quR7Z2

Maguire is one of the first building blocks needed at Old Trafford before United can mount their own attempt at dominating Europe, but he could be set for a substantial hand in restoring the club's former lustre. 

United travel to Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday evening as they look to keep pace with defending champions Manchester City at the top of the Premier League.