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Rovers reveal Jones concern

Image: Jones: Defender will sign a five-year deal with United after leaving Blackburn

Blackburn have claimed that Manchester United approached Phil Jones before being granted permission.

Desai claims United may have been in touch before permission granted

Blackburn have claimed that Manchester United approached Phil Jones before being granted permission to speak to the England Under 21 international. The talented and versatile centre-back's anticipated switch to Old Trafford was sealed on Monday and he will put pen to paper on a five-year deal when he returns from the European Championship in Denmark. But Ewood Park owners Venkys considered making an official complaint to the Premier League over the £20.5million deal, only to back down as they did not want any legal wrangle to hamper Jones' career. Anuradha Desai, chairperson of the Venkys group, held talks with manager Steve Kean and they decided the best course of action was to allow the highly-rated youngster to move on with their blessing.


Desai told the Mail on Sunday: "We have reasons to believe that the player's agent and maybe the player had been in touch [with United] for two to three months before permission was granted. "I was ready to take Manchester United on, ready to go to a tribunal if that's what it led to. But we spoke at length to Steve Kean and we knew Phil wanted to go to United. "We concluded that the person who would be most damaged by a delay and legal action was Phil. That wasn't fair on him. There was a release clause for £16.5m and the total deal was £4m more with the add-ons. We wish Phil well. "Phil is an outstanding young English player and I'm proud of the role Blackburn played in developing him. We made him an enormous offer to stay with us and we wanted to keep him."
United insist that they conducted all their transfer business in the correct manner and Jones' agent also rejected the suggestions from Rovers. A spokesman for Manchester United responded: "We had the appropriate permissions to speak to Phil Jones." And Jones' agent, John Colquhoun added: "I won't be commenting on the confidential process that was undertaken. "Everyone is telling me they're happy with what went on so, unless I hear different and unless I've got questions to answer, I don't feel I have to comment."

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