Man Utd clinch deal for Phil Jones

Manchester United have confirmed the capture of England Under-21 defender Phil Jones on a five-year deal after agreeing an undisclosed fee with Blackburn Rovers.

Phil Jones
GettyImagesPhil Jones is one of the most highly-rated young defenders in the Premier League

United thought they had secured Jones' services last week, only for the transfer to be halted due to an unforeseen snag. It was claimed Blackburn were holding out for more cash and that Liverpool had jumped in with a £20 million offer.

However, Jones, who featured for England U-21's in their opening European Championship match against Spain in Denmark, apparently told Rovers he did not wish to join any other club than United.

And with the Red Devils refusing to budge beyond the figure - believed to be £16.5 million - that triggered a buyout clause in the 19-year-old's contract, Blackburn have been forced to agree a sale.

''Manchester United is delighted to announce it has signed an agreement with Blackburn Rovers for the transfer of Phil Jones,'' said a United statement. ''The player passed a medical in Manchester last week and has agreed a five-year contract. The deal will be completed once the player returns from international duty.''

A statement, released on behalf of the owners, board and manager, on the Blackburn site read: "Much as we would love him to stay on with us - and we made all efforts to convince him to stay - Phil has to finally follow his heart. We are extremely happy with his contribution to our team and we wish him all the very best in his future endeavours."

In addition, United are hoping to complete the signing of Spain goalkeeper David de Gea, who produced an excellent performance in Herning on the opposite side to Jones.

However, it is also anticipated Sir Alex Ferguson will land Aston Villa's Ashley Young first, once the Midlands outfit have sorted out their managerial vacancy, and a replacement is also anticipated for Paul Scholes, who confirmed his retirement last month.

*Taken from
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