Former Manchester United graduate Danny Higginbotham feels Manchester United made a mistake selling the likes of Michael Keane and Jonny Evans during Louis van Gaal’s reign at Old Trafford.
The Dutchman was responsible for overseeing a transition at the Mancunian giants, and this saw the likes of Keane, Evans, Robin van Persie, Angel di Maria, Javier Hernandez and Danny Welbeck shown the exit door.
Whilst United are currently in a good stead under Jose Mourinho, Higginbotham believes United were wrong to offload Keane and Evans as they could have evolved into instrumental players for the club. Keane never got his chance to impress under Van Gaal, and he was loaned out to Burnley in September 2014, before sealing his permanent move a couple of months later.
The England international has since moved on to Everton for around £30m, and he looks set to play a pivotal role in their progress under Ronald Koeman. Meanwhile, Evans was offloaded to Tony Pulis’ West Bromwich Albion back in the summer of 2015, and he has since been identified as one of the most consistent centre-backs in the division.
The Northern Irishman attracted interest from Premier League club Arsenal last summer, and he now appears set to join United’s cross-city rivals Manchester City. The Citizens have spent heavily on their defensive department this summer, and they look a more secure unit than in Pep Guardiola’s first season in-charge.
Higginbotham told Sky Sports: “When him and Michael Keane went, it was wrong to let them go. Keane was still developing and Evans had never let them down. It was not a fantastic point at Manchester United letting both of them go. He’s [Evans] shown he’s more than good enough playing for West Brom and the better team you play for the better you look. But if he was to join Man City then he’d get even better.”