I have improved a lot says Phil Jones

Being praised as the best English defender of the moment from England manager, Gareth Southgate, Phil Jones continued his brilliant display against Slovakia on Monday night and in a recent interview, he has explained the reasons behind his success so far as his partnership has helped Manchester United keep three consecutive clean sheets in the Premier League. Due to this he was selected for the England team and has so far impressed everyone.

He praised his teammates whom he faces in training, giving him a better understanding of the opposition’s strikers he faces week in week out. So far, the names he has in mind have shone as they are all tearing up defences, excelling in every game, in spite of the fact that they play or come from the bench.

“As a defender, you want to play against the best strikers in the world. You want to test yourself and prove to people that you’re good enough to do that.

“Playing against these players in training every day makes me a better player. It gives me a better understanding of how to deal with these types of players when they’re on the opposing team.”

The man of the moment at England has a special mention from Jones as he was vital to England’s win against Malta while he was involved in both goals on Monday brilliantly assisting Eric Dier and then he had saved the better for later as he scored a great goal to give England three valuable points.

“He’s a great lad off the pitch and, on it, he’s a special talent,” Jones added. “He’s already special but he’ll be a world-beater one day, he’s that good.

“He’s so quick, sharp, technically gifted, two-footed and a nightmare for defenders. You’ve seen it this season already, he’s given defenders nightmares. He’s an Academy product and players from the youth system have done great over the last few years. He’s a special player and we’re lucky to have him.”

However, the credits of all the great displays the defender has made so far at United go to Eric Bailly as well who only joined the club last season and became instantly a fan favourite with his performances. Jones describes him as a great person off the pitch as well and they have bonded, something can be easily told with the late results on the pitch with Jones shining.

“He’s adapted really well. He’s a great lad in the dressing room, he’s a talented footballer, he’s strong and he’s quick.

“He had a good first season and hopefully he can do even better this season. He’s a funny guy and the lads bounce off him, so we’re happy to have him here.”

Despite being injury prone when playing, Jones has shown that he is a very good defender and the club legends whom he has played with have helped a lot in this term. He has had the chance to be advised from Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand and this surely says that he is doing things right, taking an example from the best. Of course, he hasn’t had easy times, but the fact that he is being trusted to play alongside Bailly means that Jose Mourinho knows how good he actually is.

“I’ve played with so many good players. In my position, the likes of Rio [Ferdinand] and Nemanja [Vidic]. “Giggsy [Ryan Giggs] was a great help for me when he was at the club too.”

he joined United when Sir Alex Ferguson was manager and he had to go through David Moyes and Louis van Gaal to get to Mourinho who has been a great adviser to Jones and we noticing this in every game he is playing, because according to Jones, the players are aware of what the manager expects and wants from them.

“And, in terms of managers, I’ve had a lot of help, but that’s United in a nutshell. It’s not just one player or one manager, everyone chips in and that’s the way it should be. That’s a team, and that’s what we are.

“I’m learning a lot off our current manager. We know exactly what he expects of us and he knows the players inside and out. We’re all enjoying it.”

The atmosphere is great as well as the manager and the team are on fire and so ready for the upcoming fixtures. However, the defender cannot play in the Champions League game against Basel, still suffering the match ban and we are also facing the Swiss without Bailly as well; whoever plays will still do good as everything about this United is exciting.

Written by Fabiola Cejku


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