Louis van Gaal wanted Patrice Evra to stay at Manchester United AND be his captain, but now he wants Nani to join him at Juventus
Evra joined Juventus despite agreeing a one-year contract extension earlier this summer
Patrice Evra has revealed that neither Robin van Persie nor Wayne Rooney would be appointed Manchester United captain under Louis van Gaal had he stayed at the club, as the new manager wanted Evra to skipper his side.
Despite Van Gaal’s attempts to persuade his to stay, Evra decided the time was right for a new challenge and agreed to join Italian league champions Juventus for an undisclosed fee, thought to be around the £3m mark.
Agreeing a two-year deal with the Old Lady, Evra left United after eight years with the club, making a total of 379 appearances, and the left-back confirmed that Van Gaal gad tried his best to keep him at Old Trafford but was unable to change his mind.
“Manchester United wanted to keep me and they also wanted to give me the captain's band,” Evra told Sky Sports.
“Van Gaal was disappointed to see me go away, but I had already made a choice.
“It was really difficult to leave Man United, but I did it. I made my choice and I am really happy with my choice.”
Evra also admitted his surprise – along with most people in Turin – at former manager Antonio Conte’s immediate departure, but went on to stress that he is happy to be a part of Juventus despite the manager who signed him no longer leading the club.
“I was really surprised when Antono Conte left,” Evra added. “I was wondering why a coach who strongly wanted me would have left but in the end everyone is the owner of his own destiny. I am not angry with Conte but I am happy that I am with Juventus - a great club with a great history.”
The 33-year-old Frenchman may not be the only United player to arrive at Juventus this summer, with misfit Nani closing on an exit from the club despite signing a new long-term contract last season.
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Evra was quick to support a move for the Portuguese winger, who he labelled a “great player”, and also admitted his delight at playing alongside former United team-mate Carlos Tevez.
“He is a great player and it was a privilege for me to play with Nani. If Juve are interested in him, I can only say that Nani would be a great purchase,” said Evra.
“Carlos is a warrior. It was tough for me to see him leave United for another team. We're great friends on and off the pitch.”
The aim for Evra is clear – help Juventus win a fourth consecutive Serie A title and make a realistic attempt to challenge for the Champions League.
“It won't be easy to win four titles in a row,” he admitted. “I managed to do it three times with Manchester United and know how difficult the challenge is.
“We also hope to do well in the Champions League. It's a great competition and we'll look to go as far as we can.”
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