One to Watch #54: Phil Jones

Last updated : 18 August 2010 By Dan Buxton

Name:  Phil Jones

Date of Birth: 21/02/1992

Position: Defender/Midfielder

Club: Blackburn Rovers

Previous clubs: None

International caps:  England (U21) - 4 (0)

                                    England (U19) - 1 (0)

A solid and commanding defender who can also play as a defensive
midfielder, Jones has come through the ranks at Blackburn since
joining the club at the age of 11, and is now a member of the first
team squad.  Jones has received praise from boss Sam Allardyce who
descrbed him as a "shining light" and also Alan Hansen on Match of the
Day 2.

Jones made his first team debut in the Carling Cup against Nottingham
Forest last September, he went on to make his Premier League debut
later that season in Blackburns 1-1 draw with Chelsea on March 21st
2010.  Allardyce praised Jones after the match, saying  "He made his
debut and it was an outstanding performance from the young man, he
showed a lot of commitment and a lot of quality and it revved
everybody up".

Jones made 9 first team appearances in the Premier League in the
2008/2009 season, and signed a 5 year contract with Blackburn in May,
despite interest from clubs such as Manchester United, Tottenham and

Jones started Blackburns opening game of the 2010/2011 season against
Everton in midfield, after which Allardyce told the clubs official
website "It doesn't need a trained eye like mine to show what a
quality player, even in midfield, he is".  Arsene Wenger was clearly
impressed by Jones' performance as Arsenal are once again being linked
with the young defender who now has a reported £9 million price tag.
Jones has also played for England at Under-19 level and recently
gained his first cap at Under-21 level, and at only 18 years of age
looks a great prospect for the future as Fabio Capello looks to
introduce youth to the England side after their disappointing World
Cup campaign in the summer.

Brad Jones