Despite their wish to show, Rio Ferdinand has warned the young challengers to his central defensive throne that he has no intention of being eased out.
Having arrived on tour late due to their participation in the European Under-21 Championship with England Evans, Chris Smalling and £17m new boy Phil Jones are expected to make their first pre-season appearances on Saturday with the Chicago Fire.
The 32-year-old Rio Ferdinand remembers exactly how he felt at the same stage of his career. He realises the talent is there, but merely stepping aside to let them in is a different proposition completely.
“I remember what I was like when I was young looking up at Slaven Bilic, Marc Rieper, Alvin Martin and Steve Potts at West Ham. Then I was only a kid but I used to sit on the bench and think I should be playing.”
“They are all talented footballers and, I believe, Manchester United players. At some point I am sure they will take over the reins but at the moment I am competitive and I don’t want to be giving up my position to anybody. “