Manchester City have reportedly been told to cough up £23.5 million to sign Jonny Evans, who is also being targeted by Arsenal for a move this month
According to a report by The Sun, West Bromwich Albion have named their asking price for Jonny Evans, who could depart from the Hawthorns in the current window. The Baggies are demanding £23.5 million from Manchester City and Arsenal, with both clubs in need of defensive reinforcements.
Evans has managed to stabilise his career since joining West Bromwich Albion from Manchester United in the summer of 2015. So much so, that over the last 30 months, the player has established himself as one of the most reliable defenders in the Premier League.
The rise in stature has also led to widespread interest from some of the biggest clubs in the world over the last two windows. Manchester City and Arsenal were among the suitors that tried signing him last summer before West Brom managed to hold on to him, and the duo have returned for him once again in January.
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Manchester City’s need for a centre-back has surfaced due to Vincent Kompany’s persistent injury woes that have restricted his participation to a large extent once again this season. Pep Guardiola’s unwillingness to use Eliaquim Mangala leaves him little to choose beyond his first-choice options – John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi.
At Arsenal, on the other hand, Arsene Wenger has a gamut of central defenders at his disposal, with the likes of Per Mertesacker, Calum Chambers and Rob Holding to choose from in addition to the first-choice trio of Laurent Koscielny, Shkodran Mustafi and Nacho Monreal.
But, age seems to be catching up to Koscielny, while Mertesacker is set to retire at the end of the season, accentuating the need for Arsenal to sign a centre-back. Alan Pardew has insisted that West Brom are not eager to see their captain depart this month, but are resigned to losing him, with both Arsenal and Manchester City ready to lodge their first bids.
With that in mind, the Baggies have named their asking price for Evans, with a £23.5 million tag placed on him. As far as Evans is concerned, the 30-year-old prefers a move to Manchester City ahead of Arsenal, although the Citizens are looking to get the price lowered to the £20 million mark.
Either way, a move back to one of the biggest clubs in England seems imminent for the Northern Irish defender, and it remains to be seen where his next destination is, with Arsenal and Manchester City set to go head-to-head in his pursuit.