Jose Mourinho just can’t seem to make his mind up about his Manchester United squad.
Predicting who the Special One will field before every game seems nothing short of impossible. He’s simply becoming overwhelmed by the oversized squad left behind by Louis van Gaal and his somewhat questionable transfer tactics.
Nevertheless, Mourinho came very close to being forced to remove one player in particular from his squad. In fact, he actively feared for the defender’s career.
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Return to the side
The man in question proves Phil Jones. The once England regular has enjoyed a somewhat unexpected return to the United side in recent weeks. This is despite the fact he was heavily linked with an exit over the summer.
Moreover, injuries have plagued his United career. Despite being fielded on 41 occassions during his inaugural campaign, Jones has featured just 39 times in the last three terms.
Therefore, when knocks and drops in form of other defenders paved the way for a first team return, Jones grabbed the opportunity with both hands.
Having started in the victory over Swansea City and in a draw over Arsenal in which they deserved to win, Jones has impressed. In fact, the 24-year-old may just have saved his United career with such refreshing showings.
After all, Chris Smalling has been in oddly erratic form and Eric Bailly hasn’t kicked on from his immaculate start to the season. As for Marcos Rojo, the less said the better.
However, it wasn’t all so positive at the start of the season. Jones’ nightmarish record with injuries even left Mourinho questioning the future of his career as a whole.
Rather surprisingly though, in light of this, the Special One was on hand to offer a substantial amount of praise. Considering the 53-year-old has been publically criticising some of his stars recently, it’s quite the refreshing change.
According to the Mirror, when asked whether he had feared for Jones’ career, he stated: “I have to confess even myself, when he was injured again at the beginning of the season, I was also feeling that fear.
“But in the last month we have seen him deliver great performances at a moment when the team has lost Eric Bailly and Chris Smalling. Phil gave us the stability we have at the moment.
“He has a good personality and now, with one or two weeks of football and training, looks very sharp and the team are safe.”
Consequently, it’s clear that Mourinho has been thankful for the security Jones has provided and the swift recovery he’s made.
With United’s fortunes on the up, maybe the 24-year-old is the right man to star in the centre of defence too. That being said, given Mourinho’s indecisiveness at Old Trafford so far, it’s anybody’s guess.
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