Deja vu Down Under for Evra

Patrice Evra (AP)
Patrice Evra (AP)

Sydney - Patrice Evra is with a new club this year but still finds himself in Australia for a pre-season friendly - and that is not the only similarity the French defender has noticed after making the switch from Manchester United to Juventus.

The 33-year-old left back moved to Turin for 1.2 million pounds ($2.05 million) in July after eight years at Old Trafford in which he won five English Premier league titles, the Champions League and the Club World Cup in 2008.

He joins a Juventus side under the new management of Massimiliano Allegri, as United were last year when they came to Sydney at the start of David Moyes's ill-fated reign, but with expectations of silverware still sky-high.

"Now I am a Juventus player, it's a massive club with a big history," he told reporters at a news conference on Friday.

"We are a strong side, we have some great champions in the team.

"It doesn't change from when you are with Manchester United, when you arrive you have the same number of fans. It shows you how big a club this is, how many trophies they have won.

"And that's why I chose to come and play for this club, because I know all that matters is winning, this is the winning mentality and I love that."

The challenge for Juventus this season is to win the Italian league title for the fourth successive season as well as try and turn around their miserable recent record in European football.

Evra said it was that kind of high stakes challenge that had attracted him to the club.

"It was very difficult to leave Man United because it was like my second family," he added.

"But as soon as I knew there was interest from Juve, I knew it would be a new challenge for me because I have to repay the faith they showed in me.

"I have to show more as a Juventus player because we have to win four times in a row. It's never easy to win four times in a row.

"I won it with Man United three times but four times is really difficult. And we have to do much better in the Champions League."

Evra made his Juve debut in an 8-1 humbling of an Indonesia XI in Jakarta on Wednesday but is expecting a much tougher match against an A-League All Stars XI led by Juventus great Alessandro del Piero in Sydney on Sunday.

"Last year when we came with Man United, we won 5-0 but it was not that easy a game," he recalled.

"That's why I told my team mates it would be a different game from that we played in Jakarta. Because Australia I think they played a great World Cup, they deserved to win the game against Holland."

Sydney's mild winter weather was another reason why he was happy to be back.

"The weather is much better than Jakarta, where it was really humid," he said.

"The weather here reminds me of Manchester, for me it's perfect."

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
What is your favourite sport to watch on TV?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
41% - 12284 votes
12% - 3672 votes
19% - 5580 votes
3% - 777 votes
1% - 296 votes
2% - 698 votes
5% - 1534 votes
8% - 2513 votes
3% - 1045 votes
Water sports
1% - 272 votes
American sports
1% - 382 votes
3% - 1002 votes