Following a successful injury return for Manchester United this season, Phil Jones feels he is “ready to play again.” Before starring in the Premier League defeat against Wolves in January, the 30-year-old went nearly two years without appearing in a competitive match.
Jones dazzled on his first appearance for the club in 712 days, capping off a miraculous comeback from injury at a time when it appeared his professional career was over.
Jones was also granted a half-hour run out a month later when United lost on penalties to Middlesbrough in the FA Cup, though he has yet to feature for the club in the two months afterwards.
The former Blackburn Rovers defender turned down a move to Bordeaux in the January transfer window, but he could want to depart United this summer in quest of regular playing time.
Jones told The Guardian in response to a question on interim manager Ralf Rangnick’s reaction to his injury return: “He was quite nice in his remarks. He expressed his delight at seeing me again and stated that I deserved a shot. But we’ll have to wait and see what happens. I’m hoping to get some game time, and I’m giving it my all every day in practice.
“I’m only 30 years old, and I’ve already missed a lot of football.” I’m trying to get back into shape and enjoy playing football again. It was difficult for me when I was injured, but I’ll never give up. I still believe I’m good enough, and I have a lot to offer. So I’m optimistic. “I’m eager to play once more.”
Jones said that his long-awaited return to the pitch felt just as nice as winning the Premier League when asked how he felt about the match.
He said, ” “The atmosphere at Old Trafford made me feel amazing and inspired. I know how much it means to those supporters because I’ve played in front of them. I’m aware of their expectations of us. I believed I fared well in the game, especially given it had been 15 months since I had played. I was unafraid because I was overjoyed to be on the field. It would have been an accomplishment even if I hadn’t performed particularly well. However, I thought I did exceptionally well.
“That was as great an accomplishment for me as winning the league.” ‘What are you talking about?’ some could ask. But returning from where I was, in a horrible place, makes it all the more wonderful.”