According to The Telegraph, Newcastle have made an enquiry over the availability of Manchester United’s Phil Jones, having grown frustrated in their pursuit of Arsenal’s Rob Holding.
The report also states that Steve Bruce has asked to be kept informed over the situation regarding Liverpool’s Rhian Brewster, while Chris Smalling has also been the subject of an enquiry.
In Smalling’s case, The Guardian state that Serie A outfit Roma are preparing a second bid for the England international who shone while on loan in Italy last term. Manchester United are said to want £18 million according to their report.
As a result, we feel that Jones might be the more attainable target, seeing as Roma can offer European football.
The ex-Blackburn man was once tipped to become Manchester United’s greatest ever player by Sir Alex Ferguson, shortly after the Red Devils won their last Premier League title in 2013.
Sky Sports quote Ferguson as saying: ‘Jones, arguably the way he is looking, could be our best ever player. I think Jones may be one of the best players we have ever had, no matter where we play him.’
However, things have gone sour for the centre-back since the Scot’s retirement.
The man who earns £75k-a-week at Old Trafford – according to Spotrac – made just two Premier League outings last season, and United have cancelled his planned surgery in an attempt to sell him this window, The Mirror report.
That same story makes the alarming revelation that Jones has missed more than 200 games for United since his £16.5 million switch from Blackburn.
Why that makes him an attractive target for Steve Bruce is a mystery.
There is no denying that the England international once looked set for greatness, but years of fitness struggles provide question marks over just how good a signing he would be.