FOOTBALL NEWS

25/10/2013 11:48, Report by Nathan Thomas

Jones pushes for a place

Ex-Busby Babe and former Manchester United manager boss Wilf McGuinness hopes that Phil Jones can build on his early season form as he looks to establish himself in David Moyes' team.

Jones has started nine of United's 13 matches so far this season and has impressed recently when stepping into his favoured centre-back position. Although Wilf is cautious about expecting too much too soon from the burly defender, he believes United's no.4 has all the attributes to become a first-team regular.

"He's certainly got it in him to be a regular starter and he has played well so far this season," Wilf told ManUtd.com. "However, one thing is important and that is not to expect too much from him. It's easy to forget that he's still a young lad and is still improving as a player."

Jones has deputised admirably in the absence of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic in the heart of United's defence. His powerful style of play and professional performances have, in the past, drawn comparisons with a certain Duncan Edwards - most notably from Edwards' team-mate and United legend Sir Bobby Charlton.

McGuinness, himself a former colleague of the man some call the greatest ever, believes those sorts of comparisons are premature, but does acknowledge some similarities in the progression of the two players.

"For me, because I think so highly of him, you can't compare anyone to Duncan Edwards. But Phil is a similar age to Duncan when he started to play for United and, like Duncan, he has been able to forge a way into the first team despite being so young."

Wilf was speaking at a Manchester United Foundation event to mark World Mental Health Day. Find out more at the Foundation website.

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