It’s safe to say Sir Alex Ferguson didn’t make many mistakes while manager of Manchester United, especially in the transfer market.
Signing players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Ruud van Nistelrooy, and Wayne Rooney were all masterstrokes from the legendary boss, but there were a couple of deals that occurred during his later years that drained the club’s finances.
Phil Jones is a prime example and the Englishman still finds himself at Old Trafford stealing a wage.
Ferguson brought the youngster to Man United way back in 2011 from Blackburn Rovers as a promising talent, with the transfer fee of £16m certainly suggesting he could go all the way to the top.
Indeed, speaking of the centre-back nearer to that time, Ferguson said: “Jones, arguably, the way he is looking, could be our best ever player.”
Initial impressions were solid enough, as he featured regularly for the club when they won their last Premier League title in 2012/2013 and was one of the first names on the team sheet under David Moyes, making 26 league appearances in 2013/2014.
His game time fluctuated under first Louis van Gaal and then Jose Mourinho, although he did add FA, League, and Europa League trophies to his collection.
Since the beginning of the 2019/2020 campaign, however, Jones has played just 16 matches for the club, while continuing to pocket a weekly wage of £75k-per-week, a staggering sum for someone used sparingly.
This has come over the course of 592 weeks, and with his contract due for expiry next summer, surely this will be his final season at the club.
The defender was dubbed “woeful” in the past by writer Denise Evans and with Erik ten Hag not selecting him for any match so far this term, it’s safe to say they could be getting his wages off the club’s finances sooner rather than later.
Although signed to be part of United’s future under Ferguson, it didn’t quite work out for Jones in what has been an underwhelming career especially considering his early potential.