This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict‘ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Derby County are reportedly set to battle Burnley and West Bromwich Albion to sign Manchester United defender Phil Jones on loan in January.
According to the Daily Star, the Rams are targeting Jones ahead of the winter window and a deal looks possible for them as United are ready to pay a considerable proportion of £120,000-a-week wages.
But would he be a good signing for Derby? And do they need him?
We pressed our FLW writers for their thoughts…
I think this would actually be a good signing for Derby.
I know Jones has been criticised a lot during his time at Man United, and his performances have been very poor at times.
But he would still be one of the best defenders in the Championship if he joined, in my opinion.
Derby clearly need to bring in another centre-half with Curtis Davies set to be missing for a while, and Andre Wisdom filling in at centre-back.
If they can find a way of paying only a very small portion of his wages, then he would be a quality addition.
Have any of these 22 players ever been in Derby County’s academy?
Of all the Championship sides that Jones is currently being linked with, I would say that Derby would be his most likely destination.
Not only could his experience prove key in their relegation battle, but with Curtis Davies facing a spell on the sidelines, Jones might be a timely replacement for him.
Above all else, Jones is a former teammate of Wayne Rooney, and it’s a transfer that I can very much see gathering pace over the coming weeks and into the January window.
In terms of Jones himself, whilst he hasn’t played competitively for United for almost 11 months, he should have more than enough quality to hold his own at Championship level.
This would certainly be an interesting one.
Phil Jones is a player of undoubted quality but things have gone a little bit sour for him in recent years.
He needs a move to find his mojo again and a switch to Derby County could be just the solution.
A move to a Premier League club seems unlikely but given his relationship as a former teammate of Wayne Rooney, this could make sense.
Of course, his salary could be an issue but if that can be resolved then it could be a go-er.