Manchester United’s incredible demands for outcast defender Phil Jones to leave Old Trafford in January further highlights why a move to West Ham this summer would have been the wrong decision by David Moyes.
According to The Sun, Manchester United are demanding £20million to sell Jones in the upcoming January market after boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer opted to omit the former England international from his 25-man Premier League squad.
The 28-year-old has not featured for the Red Devils in any competition this term and only managed to earn two Premier League appearances last season, the last of which came in January while scarcely being named in any of Solskjaer’s matchday squads.
A number of top-flight sides are said to have shown interest in potential deals to lure Jones away from Old Trafford in the past, but no move was ever secured for the £100,000-per-week centre-half who only penned new terms in February 2019 running to 2023.
Jones is also noted to love being at United, though would consider leaving the Red Devils to play regular first-team football again in the hopes of earning a recall to the England squad two years after his 27th and final cap.
Information collected by TodoFichajes suggests West Ham would be the main candidate to sign Jones, having held interest in the summer and feeling his exclusion from Solskjaer’s squad could aid efforts to finalise an agreement.
While reports are identifying West Ham as the main candidate to sign Jones, the east London outfit were right to walk away from negotiations in the summer when Moyes was first alleged to be keen on securing a reunion.
The Mirror noted back in March that Moyes was considering rivalling Newcastle United for Jones’ signature, which was thought to be available for £12m at the time.
Even at the lower figure, Football Insider cited three reasons why a deal would not occur even though Jones was seen to fit the profile Moyes was after, as the Irons boss questioned whether the 28-year-old had the desire to reignite his wavering career, refused to match his Red Devils salary, and was seen to be on the decline rather than on the up.
Claims that United will now demand £20m for Jones adds a fourth reason as to why West Ham were wise to walk away, while the defender’s comments from 2015 also add a fifth.
Following a 2-1 defeat to Norwich City that marked a third loss in a row for Louis van Gaal’s side, Jones noted that the mood in the Old Trafford dressing room was still not as bad as it once was during Moyes’ tenure.
“I wouldn’t say it’s the lowest moment,” said Jones, via quotes by BBC Sport. “I think it became pretty glum under David Moyes.”
Jones’ comments ought to have raised fierce concerns in the West Ham hierarchy this summer that a deal to bring the defender to the London Stadium would have been inane, but not as absurd as striking a deal in January despite the mounting reasons against a move.