Midfielder enjoying working under Stam’s styleWhen George Evans joined Man City’s Academy at the age of six, Jaap Stam was wearing the number-6 shirt for cross-town rivals United. By that time he had already secured an incredible treble, which included taking home a Champions League medal.
Fast forward to the present day, and Mancunian Evans – our current number-6 – is relishing the football that he is playing under one of the greats of the game.
The 21-year-old midfielder has played the duration in each of the two opening fixtures, including Tuesday night’s win in the EFL Cup against Argyle, and hopes that the team can keep building on their positive start to the campaign.
“All the lads are really enjoying the football,” said Evans after the midweek win against the Pilgrims. “The gaffer is an unbelievable person to work with – he has done everything in the game and everyone has full respect for him. The way that he wants us to play is really good.
“It’s a credit to the lads that everyone has really bought into it and they’re working really hard in training to try and put it into practice in games, and we’re getting good results as well.
“He’s an unbelievable manager and wants the best from us, and he expects the best from us. We’re definitely capable of that. I thought we played some good stuff tonight; we went sloppy for five or ten minutes, but overall it was an excellent performance and a good 2-0 win.
“I thought we played very well – especially in the first half. In the second half as well we had some good possession; I think we’re playing the way the gaffer wants us to, and I think it’s really starting to come off now.”
Evans has been deployed in a deep-lying midfield role in the opening two fixtures; he has enjoyed linking up with his players from that position.
“We’ve got a good understanding,” he continued. “There is good rotation in midfield and we’re playing some good stuff now. We’re keeping the ball a lot better and it’s working well. We get to situations and ideas that we work on in training with the gaffer and it’s starting to show on the pitch.
“We’re playing to our strengths – there are some good footballers in this group. You can see from the stats in the first half, and the first half against Preston, it has been very good. It’s very encouraging, especially when we’re winning. We’re doing well with the ball in the final third as well.
“I really enjoy that holding midfield position. It’s a position that I played when I was coming through the Academy at Man City and I’m really enjoying it. If the gaffer wants me to play there, I’m more than happy.
“I’ve got a good understanding with all the players now, and we’re shifting the ball around really well now and shifting the opposition around.”