A final round of talks over a new deal for Manchester United left-back Patrice Evra could ultimately cost David Moyes his ideal replacement.
United are reportedly willing to offer the Frenchman a one-year rolling deal worth £85,000 per week to keep him at the club beyond this season, which could temporarily stave off the need for a replacement.
Evra’s experience has been key this season at a time when Moyes’ side has struggled to adjust to the era after Sir Alex Ferguson.
The problem the new deal creates is that it reduces the likelihood of potential Evra replacements coming to the club, in particular Luke Shaw.
The £30 million rated Southampton star is someone who won’t move away from the Saints any time soon unless he’s going to a club where he’s going to be the undoubted first choice player in his position.
Evra’s calibre, profile and experience means that if he commits to the proposed deal from United, he’s likely to start next season as Moyes’ main left-back with any new player coming in likely to be confined to the bench.
It’s a big statement and commitment on United’s part considering Evra is now 32-years-old but in a season where there has been so much uncertainty, it’s only natural for Moyes to want to keep players that he trusts.
Where the situation could change is if Evra decides to reject the proposed deal, following captain Nemanja Vidic in leaving United at the end of the season.
That would create a direct need for a left-back in Moyes’ squad, allowing him to go after a top quality replacement, able to offer that player a place in the first team immediately.
It comes down to whether the club want to keep a hard working, honest servant or whether they want to go all out to try and sign someone who could play at the highest level for the next decade and beyond.
Unfortunately for Moyes, it’s unlikely that he’ll be able to benefit from a squad which has both Evra and Shaw named in it.