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Newcastle United Urged To Consider Recruiting This English Defender: Should Bruce Move In For Him?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent interview with ChronicleLive, football finance expert Kieran Maguire urged Newcastle United to consider recruiting Manchester United defender Phil Jones in January. Maguire said,

“The good thing is from a financial fair play point of view, Newcastle do have plenty of wiggle room.

“That’s not going to be a problem of them, that’s the one positive. Then it comes down to the mystery that is Mike Ashley.

“Loan deals for those players who are out of favour at their own clubs – Chelsea have a big squad and you have the likes of Fikayo Tomori not getting a game.

“Phil Jones at Manchester United – there are players of that nature.

“I’m not linking them directly, but those are the types of players who have not made progress at their clubs.

“They’re good players and their host clubs will be looking to park a proportion of their wages elsewhere.”

Jones’ Career At The Theatre Of Dreams Has Come To A Standstill

Jones is yet to make an appearance for the Red Devils this season and is currently not a part of Ole Gunnar Solskajer’s plans at Old Trafford. He was a sporadic presence in the Man United first-team last season when he struggled to make an impact under Solskjaer’s stewardship.

The 28-year-old featured in eight matches for the Mancunian outfit in the previous campaign, netting one goal and securing two yellow cards in the process across all fronts. He caught the eye with a handful of appearances in Europe where he averaged 1.3 tackles, 0.7 interceptions, 4.0 clearances and 2.0 dribbles per game in the 2019-20 edition of the UEFA Europa League. Jones even distributed the ball immaculately out from the back as evident from his pass completion rate of 91.7% in European football last season (stats via whoscored).

Newcastle United urged to consider recruting Jones in January (Jones is seen in the photo)
Manchester United’s English defender Phil Jones leaves the pitch at the end of the UEFA Champions League quarter-final second leg football match between Barcelona and Manchester United at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on April 16, 2019. (Photo credit should read LLUIS GENE/AFP via Getty Images)

What Does The English Defensive Ace Offer On The Pitch?

When Jones is playing with confidence on the field, he can be a decent centre-back as he has got good defensive awareness that helps him to clear his lines when needed. He is quite aggressive with his tackles and can use his strong 1.85m frame to win a few headers for his side.

Should The Tyneside Giants Move In For Jones In January?

However, the Man United outcast lacks pace, which can sometimes make him a liability on the field. However, at 28, he still has plenty of football left in his locker, so if Bruce believes he can get the best out of Jones, then the Magpies head coach should consider making a move to acquire his services either on loan or permanently next month.

Jones’ career at the Theatre of Dreams is going nowhere at the moment, so it makes sense for him to seek a move elsewhere in search of some game time in the second half of this campaign. Newcastle could be an ideal fit for him as he might get some playing minutes under Steve Bruce, who can benefit from rotating his squad a bit more in the coming months.

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