Phil Jones appears to be stuck in strange sort of purgatory at Manchester United right now.
Not good enough to start for the Red Devils, yet there is always a fleeting thought that there is still some promise, with his injuries utterly obliterating his chances of breaking into the team.
However, with his star now surely dimmed and reports in The Metro suggesting that the club are prepared to let the defender go this summer, now is the time for Jones to depart Old Trafford for the good of both Manchester United and his career.
He played a key role under the Scot in the 2012/13 title win, remaining a solid centre-back option until the 2018/19 season.
Former United boss Jose Mourinho also appeared to be a big fan, stating he had “everything” that the Portuguese ace looked for in a defender.
Since then, his chances of first-team action have all-but diminished, making just eight appearances in all competitions since, having not even taken to the pitch at all in 2020/21.
Jones’ opportunities now seem even more remote, with the £5.4m-rated man behind the likes of Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly and even Axel Tuanzebe in the pecking order.
With reports suggesting that Solskjaer is prioritising a centre-back in the summer transfer window, that sees his chances of seeing first-team action going from extremely unlikely to completely evaporated.
Now at the age of 29 and with two years left to run on his £75k per week contract, Man United need to let Jones go, as they’re paying him a huge salary for pretty much no reason. He’s often injured and even when he’s not, he’s not playing.
The player himself should be keen to make a move too in order to try and re-start his stalled career.
It makes total sense then for an imminent parting of the ways between the defender and his employers. Despite having made 224 appearances for the Red Devils, Jones will hopefully now escape the purgatory that he currently finds himself in.