A move for Wayne Rooney’s Derby County transfer target, Phil Jones, looks unlikely to be on the cards at Pride Park this summer.
That’s according to a report by the Daily Mail, who claim that the centre-back is an “immovable object” at Manchester United as his £110,000-per-week wage is putting off potential suitors, two of whom were reported to be Derby and Middlesbrough earlier this season.
While the lure of attracting a player with 200 Premier League appearances to their name, in addition to one who has won a Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup and a Europa League title, may be tempting to many involved with Derby, there are a number of reasons why they should avoid moving to sign Jones, either on loan or permanently.
Firstly, the England international’s wages are a factor that simply cannot be ignored, as Jones’ six-figure weekly salary massively eclipses that of any other Derby player, including Rooney’s own earnings of £46,000-per-week, something that could potentially cause a significant knock to the squad’s morale – if the defender were to be brought in, even on a reduced deal.
Secondly, Jones is simply not worth an enormous salary, as the 29-year-old has made just two Premier League appearances over the past two years, neither of which have come this season – meaning that the centre-back’s match fitness is likely to be extremely lacking, as well as his capability to still be able to put in a high level of performance in a match being as good as anyone’s guess.
Finally, the financial resources that the loan signing of Jones would swallow – a season-long loan could set Derby back around £5,720,000 if they had to pay his entire salary – could be spent much more wisely, perhaps on investing further in the club’s youth setup, or even on younger and hunger transfer targets who have a much higher ceiling than the Manchester United flop.
As such, it would be highly advisable for Rooney to forget all about the signing of the defender who Martin Keown claimed “plays like he’s on roller-skates” and rather to concentrate his focus on building a team that is capable of a much more respectable finish in the Championship next season – if, that is, they avoid the drop this weekend.