BAR­GAIN-BUY EVANS ‘PRICE­LESS’

Sunday Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - Chelsea v Leicester City - BY JOHN RICHARD­SON

HARRY MAGUIRE cost Manch­ester United £80mil­lion as the world’s most ex­pen­sive de­fender – and now a £3.5m Old Traf­ford “re­ject” is busy re­build­ing Le­ices­ter’s de­fence.

North­ern Ire­land in­ter­na­tional Jonny Evans (right), who signed for the Foxes as a bar­gain buy in Au­gust 2018, spent nine years at United.

And fel­low Ul­ster­man Gerry Tag­gart is con­vinced Evans’ ex­pe­ri­ence is the vi­tal fac­tor for the Foxes, as they re­shape a back­line with­out Maguire.

Caglar Soyuncu, 23, had got lost down the Foxes’ peck­ing or­der after ar­riv­ing from SC Freiburg for £19m last year, but was named man of the match against

Wolves last week, with wily Evans a guid­ing in­flu­ence.

For­mer

Le­ices­ter star

Tag­gart said: “Ev­ery­one should be thank­ful that Jonny is at the club. I still can’t un­der­stand why Manch­ester United let him go.

“With Harry Maguire gone, Jonny has had to take ex­tra re­spon­si­bil­ity.

“But he com­mands great re­spect from the other play­ers and is a key man in the de­fence.

“He reads the game bril­liantly and he is a great com­mu­ni­ca­tor. It’s the same when he plays for North­ern

Ire­land.

“It’s no won­der the likes of Manch­ester City and Arse­nal had their eyes on him.”

Boss Brendan Rodgers has called Evans, 31, “the steal of the decade”.

Evans said: “Caglar was ex­cel­lent against Wolves.

“We’ve proved that life goes on with­out Harry.”

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