Legendary Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was widely applauded after he played a prominent role to help the club fend off Arsenal in the race to sign English defender Phil Jones from Blackburn Rovers in 2011. Manchester United had to part ways with £16m to sign the then young prospect ahead of rivals Arsenal and their manager Arsene Wenger.
It is safe to say that Phil Jones has not matched the same tenacity shown by the Red Devils off the pitch with his performances on the pitch. Phil Jones was expected to be a part of a formidable centre back partnership with Chris Smalling for both club (Manchester United) and country (England) for many years to come but that has not happened with the two players facing respective bleak futures at Old Trafford.
Chris Smalling was a £10m signing from Fulham in 2010 and he had to leave Manchester United for Italian side AS Roma on loan at the start of the season to accommodate the signing of Harry Maguire in the Red Devils defence. Smalling is on course to make his loan move to Italy permanent with Roma keen to sign him on a long-term deal after his impressive loan spell at the club.
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Phil Jones would be best advised to follow in the footsteps of former club and national team colleague Chris Smalling as he tries to revive his career which has stagnated at Manchester United. The 28-year-old has been linked with a lot of English clubs over the last two transfer windows and this summer could be the perfect time for him to finally leave the Red Devils.
Southampton and Leicester City are some of the Premier League teams previously touted as a possible destination for Phil Jones who has 27 caps for England. He has scored two goals in 256 league games at Manchester United.
For now, he’s behind Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly and Axel Tuanzebe in the centre back pecking order at his club and more central defenders might be signed in the summer.