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England under-21 international defender completes his protracted transfer from Ewood Park to Old Trafford for an undisclosed fee after making 40 appearances for Rovers


Manchester United have confirmed the signing of Blackburn Rovers highly rated youngster Phil Jones.

The 19-year-old, tipped as a future England captain by former Rover boss Sam Allardyce and current England under-21 coach Stuart Pearce, has penned a five-year deal at Old Trafford, with Sir Alex Ferguson believed to have shelled out £16.5 million to take the player to the Premier League champions.

"Manchester United is delighted to announce it has signed an agreement with Blackburn Rovers for the transfer of Phil Jones," said a United statement.

"The player passed a medical in Manchester last week and has agreed a five-year contract.

"The deal will be completed once the player returns from international duty."

The transfer looked set to be completed last week, however, it was halted amidst claims Rovers were holding out for more cash and that Liverpool had made a £20m offer to take the player to Anfield.

Nonetheless, Jones, who had also been linked with a move to Arsenal, made clear his feelings that he only wished to move to Old Trafford, and Rovers have agreed to the player's wishes.

A statement released by Blackburn Rovers on the club's official website reads: "Much as we would love him to stay on with us - and we made all efforts to convince him to stay - Phil has to finally follow his heart.

"We are extremely happy with his contribution to our team and we wish him all the very best in his future endeavours."

Jones, who played in England under-21's European Championship opener against Spain on Sunday in Denmark, will link up at Old Trafford with his under-21 international defensive partner Chris Smalling, with the duo tipped to marshall the United and England backline for the next decade.

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