Stoke City assistant manager Mark Bowen has said that the club remain hopeful of signing Manchester United defender Phil Jones.
Jones has been constantly linked with a move to The Potters, and Mark Hughes in known to be very interested in the center-back.
The English defender has struggled for fitness in the last couple of campaigns, with niggling injuries constantly hampering his progress. He was touted for greatness by Sir Alex Ferguson, who believed the center-back could one day go on to become the best player to have ever played for the club.
However, things haven’t quite worked out for Jones as first expected.
The defender – who signed from Blackburn Rovers for £16 million in 2011 – now finds himself out of favour at United.
The club signed Eric Bailly in the summer, and the Ivorian has already made a huge impression on the fans and manager Jose Mourinho, and looks set to be the Portuguese’s first choice center-back.
Mourinho has promised that all his players – including Jones – will get a chance to play once the cup competitions begin. However, the defender, still only 24, could be tempted by a move to Stoke where he could be guaranteed first-team football.
“I remember Sam Allardyce talking about him when he broke through and said he was the new Duncan Edwards,” Bowen said in the Stoke Sentinel.
“He did well as a youngster, got the big move, but it hasn’t worked out for him there. I don’t know how close we are or how far down the line it’s gone.
“He’s played the majority of his career at centre-half, but in his younger days he went into midfield as well.
“I don’t know what’s gone wrong, but he’s gone from even a player Fergie [Alex Ferguson] was talking about as being someone who could have been one of the greats.
“But we have a bit of reputation for bringing players like that into this set-up and then thriving. Fingers crossed, something may happen.”