Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal Keeping Tabs on Out-of-Favour Manchester United Defender

​Manchester United defender, Phil Jones, is on the radar of both Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal following a lack of game time this season. 

The English defender has just 12 months left on his contract and would be available on a free transfer next summer should the Red Devils decide against triggering their 12-month extension option in Jones’ contract. 

It is believed that, despite not being a first-choice centre-back for the Red Devils this season, Manchester United will trigger the extension, according to The Sun.

Manchester United v Derby County - Carabao Cup Third Round

One potential reason for this could be that, should United be willing to let the Englishman leave, the extension would allow them to get some money for Jones rather than allowing Premier League rivals to take him for free. 

However, this could be a cynical way of looking at it and there’s a good chance that United actually want to keep Jones for at least one more season. 

Whilst not being a regular starter, Jones has ample experience of playing in the Premier League, having joined Manchester United from Blackburn Rovers in 2011 for a fee of £15m. He has since made 194 appearances for the club and is still only 26-years-old.

Blackburn Rovers v Bolton Wanderers - Premier League

Jones may have made more appearances for the club had it not been for his dire injury record. The Englishman is currently behind Chris Smalling and Victor Lindelof in the Manchester United pecking order, and it is a partnership that has seen the Red Devils improve on their poor start to the season.

Should Jones choose to leave, Arsenal may well be the better option as they have a less settled centre-back pairing. The Gunners currently have to pick between Rob Holding, Shkodran Mustafi, and Sokratis Papastathopoulos, whilst Laurent Koscielny remains out with an injury. 


Manchester United next face Manchester City in the Manchester derby, before facing a struggling Crystal Palace at Old Trafford after the international break.

Let’

Man City 3-1 Man Utd: Report, Ratings & Reactions as Citizens Blast Past Red Devils in Derby Clash

Manchester City continued their impressive run of form on Sunday afternoon, as they beat their local rivals Manchester United 3-1 in a fiercely fought derby match.

City took the lead after just eleven minutes, as David Silva slammed home from close range after a trademark flowing move from Pep Guardiola’s side. After United rallied well until half time, their good work was undone early in the second period, as Sergio Agüero managed to beat David de Gea on his near post with a ferocious finish.

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League

The visitors pulled a goal back midway through the first half, as the ​City keeper clumsily fouled substitute Romelu Lukaku, before Anthony Martial cooly slotted in the penalty. As tensions mounted, substitute İlkay Gündoğan sealed the three points for his side late on with a calm finish from close-range.



MANCHESTER CITY

Key Talking Point

City continued their relentless surge for a second consecutive league title, but didn’t look quite at their potent best despite the win. Of course, there were a number of gorgeous moves that tore United to shreds, but they noticeably dropped off in the second portion of the first half.

Guardiola’s men will head into the international break in fine spirits, having regained their spot at the top of the ​Premier League table. With the season 12 games deep, City look more than capable of defending their title, but Guardiola may well have some food for thought as he looks to dominate the game from the first to the final whistle – even in such high profile matches.

While City weren’t quite at their best, they still looked to be a different class to ​United, and once again highlighted the huge shift in power we’ve seen in Manchester over the past few seasons.


Player Ratings: Emerson (7); Walker (7), Stones (8), Laporte (7), Mendy (6); B. Silva (8), D. Silva (9), Riyad Mahrez (8); Agüero (8), Sterling (8).

Substitutes:  Sané (7) Gündoğan (7) Foden (N/A


Star Man: David Silva

Manchester City v FC Shakhtar Donetsk - UEFA Champions League Group F

David Silva is such a ridiculously consistent performer that it’s hard to think of new superlatives to describe his performances. So to put it simply: The man has the technical skills of Chelsea icon Gianfranco Zola combined with an eye for a pass similar to Andrea Pirlo in his pomp.

The Spain international turned on the magic again in the Manchester Derby, and caused the United defence no end of problems with his eye-of-a-needle passing. He also tucked away with goal calmly, and showed the composure necessary to see his side over the finish line.

Here’s how his performance went down on social media:





Worst Player: Benjamin Mendy

An uncharacteristically quiet outing for the France star, Benjamin Mendy never really got out the traps against United. To be fair, he was being marked tightly by Ashley Young, but even when he managed to find some space his crosses were lacklustre, and he didn’t pose the usual attacking threat he provides when tearing down the left wing.


MANCHESTER UNITED

Key Talking Point

It was always going to be a tough task for United to get something out of this match, but the Red Devils’ fans would have headed into the match full of optimism following their dramatic late wins against Bournemouth and Juventus in their last two matches. Mourinho’s men were unable to produce any real chances on goal, and looked lost for ideas when going forward.

For example, Martial continually went for his tried-and-tested method of bending the ball inside the far post, which the City defenders saw coming a mile off. There were some encouraging moments for United, but they simply couldn’t muster the creativity needed to make an impact, and Mourinho must take some of the blame for his insufficient game plan.


Player Ratings: De Gea (6); Young (7), Smalling (6), Lindelöf (7), Shaw (6); Herrera (6), Matić (5), Fellaini (7); Lingard (5), Martial (7), Rashford (6).

Substitutes: Lukaku (7), Mata (6), Sánchez (6)


Star Man: Marouane Fellaini

FBL-ENG-PR-MAN CITY-MAN UTD

When there’s a parade to be rained on or a party to be pooped, turning to Marouane Fellaini for some physical and disruptive midfield play is always a wise option. The Belgian ace did what he did best against City, and continually managed to disrupt their flowing moves with a jarring, musical bum note of an intervention.

While the former Everton man ended up on the losing side, his presence in the air at set-pieces and natural eye for positioning meant his side were spared being on the receiving end of a cricket score. Here’s how his performance went down on social media:







Worst Player: Jesse Lingard

The England international has looked sharp since returning from a lengthy spell on the sidelines, but he failed to provide any threat to the City defence on Sunday. The midfielder often seemed on a different wavelength to his teammates, and looked a little off the pace as his side desperately searched for an equaliser.

It must be noted that Nemanja Matić was a very close second.


Looking Ahead:

City will look to continue their positive momentum after the international break, when they take on West Ham United at the London Stadium. Their former manager Manuel Pellegrini will be eager to impress against the Premier League champions, and his rejuvenated side will be hopeful for a good result given their steady progress this season.

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League

United will hope to bounce back when they take on Crystal Palace at Old Trafford in their next Premier League encounter. Roy Hodgson’s side are in danger of slipping into the relegation zone after failing to pick up a win in the league since mid-September, and will be the ideal side for United unleash their frustrations on.

Let’

4 Key Battles That Could Decide Sunday’s Crucial Manchester Derby at the Etihad

Manchester City will welcome rivals Manchester United to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, in what will be the first Manchester derby of the season.

United will be coming into the match with optimism, having secured a vital 2-1 victory over Juventus in the Champions League. Jose Mourinho’s side have put together a good string of results recently, and they will be desperate to continue that on Sunday.

They will come up against the defending Premier League champions Manchester City, who currently sit top of the table. They have netted six goals in each of their last two games, and a similar tally on Sunday would be a dream come true for fans.

1. David de Gea vs Sergio Aguero

City’s attack have been breathtaking since Pep Guardiola’s arrival. They have netted 33 goals in the league this season, hitting at least five goals in four separate matches, and their attack looks as dangerous as ever.

As a result, United will need a huge performance from David de Gea. Fortunately for United fans, de Gea is used to spectacular performances.

City will likely enjoy a number of good chances, and Sergio Aguero needs just one to make an impact on a match. However, if he comes up against an inspired De Gea, he may just find himself on the losing side.

2. Luke Shaw vs Raheem Sterling

Luke Shaw’s emergence as a top performer for both United and England has been one of the feel-good stories of the season. He has done incredibly well to recover from a devastating leg injury, and now looks to be in some of the best form of his career.

His work at the attacking end of the field will be important, but it is his defensive role which will be vital. In Raheem Sterling, City have one of the most dangerous wingers in the world, who is capable of terrorising any defender. If Shaw is not switched on, Sterling will ghost past him with ease.

Sterling has already contributed to 14 goals this season, and Shaw cannot afford to underestimate the size of the task at hand.

3. Fernandinho vs Paul Pogba

It is no secret that Paul Pogba can be one of the finest midfielders in Europe. His unique blend of speed and power make him almost unstoppable, and it will be the job of Fernandinho to keep Pogba at bay on Sunday.

However, Fernandinho is one of the most competent defensive midfielders around, and the Brazilian will certainly not be scared of going head-to-head with Pogba.

Fernandinho will seek to limit the space and time given to Pogba and, if he can do so effectively, he could completely neutralise the World Cup winner, which would be great news for Guardiola.

4. Anthony Martial vs Kyle Walker

Is there a Premier League player in better form than Anthony Martial currently?

The Frenchman has bagged five goals in his last four league games, and looks to be really enjoying his football. He is technically superb and boasts an astonishing turn of pace, which has proved to be too much to handle for many defenders in the past.

City will counter Martial with Kyle Walker, who also possesses incredible speed. Martial will struggle to beat Walker in a race, meaning the battle between the two will likely be incredibly technical and intricate. Walker needs to stop Martial, or else he will run riot against City. 

Let’

Mino Raiola Claims Paul Pogba and Jose Mourinho Have ‘Patched Up’ Relationship at Man Utd

Star agent Mino Raiola has claimed all is well between his client Paul Pogba and under fire Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho.

The pair’s relationship has reportedly been on the rocks this season, perhaps playing some part in United’s inconsistent form. Pogba is believed to be unhappy with the role Mourinho is ordering him to play, and has hinted at a return to Juventus ahead of the winter transfer window – but Goal quote Raiola backing the midfielder to remain in Manchester for now.

FBL-EUR-C1-MAN UTD-TRAINING

The club has publicly denied the rift, but Pogba was stripped of his vice-captaincy and dropped from the first team earlier this season. The Frenchman has also hinted that he cannot say how he truly feels about the situation due to media restrictions placed on him.

Rumours intensified after the pair were filmed by Sky Sports having an altercation on the training ground. It led to reports that the World Cup winner was angling for a move away, with the player himself dropping more hints by claiming Turin ‘will always be his home’ as the two sides met in the Champions League this week.

Juventus v Manchester United - UEFA Champions League Group H

Pogba left Manchester United for Juventus before, only for the Red Devils to stump up a world record fee to lure him back four years later. Some would argue Pogba has never repaid that fee, with inconsistent shows of brilliance since his return to Old Trafford.

It is manager Mourinho who is under more pressure though, after his side began the season poorly and are left playing catch up in the title race. The fractured relationship has threatened to force the club to act one way or another, but Raiola has claimed that is no longer the case.

Dutch Eredivisie'Feyenoord v PEC Zwolle'

“He has patched up his rapport with Jose Mourinho and is calmer now. He feels important to Manchester United, even if Turin and Juventus remain in his heart.”

Let’

Man City Defender Aymeric Laporte Ready for ‘Revenge’ in Sunday’s Manchester Derby

​Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte believes his side will be seeking retribution against rivals Manchester United when the two sides face each other in the first Manchester derby of the season on Sunday.

The encounter will be the first since the Red Devils came from two goals behind to triumph 3-2 at the Etihad and delay the coronation of eventual winners City in 2017/18.

FBL-ENG-PR-MAN CITY-MAN UTD

The ​Sky Blues required a victory against José Mourinho’s side to clinch the title in April, but were stunned by an emphatic second-half display by ​United. Yet despite eventually sealing the title anyway, they handed Mourinho’s men the local bragging rights and the defeat still remains fresh in the memory of January signing Laporte, who insists his side are searching for redemption.

As quoted by ​Sky Sports, Laporte said: “There’s always a feeling of revenge any time you lose against any team.

“We are always ready to compete and need to take advantage of the good momentum of the team at the moment.

“It’s a very important match for two reasons… because it’s the Manchester derby and also because if we win we will put distance between ourselves and them in the table.”

Manchester City v FC Shakhtar Donetsk - UEFA Champions League Group F

Laporte was on the bench for City during United’s victory last season. However, since joining for £57m, the Frenchman has featured 29 times in all competitions, and is yet to suffer a loss in any of his 20 league appearances for the club. As a result, he set a new record for the longest unbeaten run in consecutive starts for a new player in the division and is hoping to extend the streak against United.

He added: “I think it’s a nice record. I wasn’t aware until someone told me but obviously it’s exciting for me.

“Breaking records is always nice. Last season as a team we reached 100 points – that was very nice and this year I have this personal record.

“I hope we don’t lose on Sunday or not this derby or the following derby. The goal is always to win and lengthen this record as much as we can.”

Let’