Young poised to join United
Villa star is ready to make move but Jones deal hits snag as Rovers demand more cash
ASTON VILLA attacker Ashley Young will officially join Manchester United later this month when he returns from holiday, but the champions’ deal for Blackburn defender Phil Jones has been hit by a dispute over the player’s transfer fee.
Jones passed a medical and agreed personal terms with United this week after the Old Trafford club met the £16m release clause in the contract Rovers gave the 19-year-old back in February.
He then joined the England U21 squad in Denmark in preparation for the European Championships convinced, along with United and his agent, that the deal had been done. Blackburn's owners, Venky's, have since said they do not have to accept a £16m transfer fee and, mindful of interest from Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal, believe he is worth more. Venky's have refused to transfer the player's registration and it may fall to lawyers to decide whether the wording in Jones' contract allows him to be sold at £16m or merely speak to clubs who meet that price.
United are said to have no concerns that Jones' transfer will not be completed for £16m. Young is believed to have agreed personal terms on an initial £16m move to Old Trafford from Villa Park but the transfer will not be formally announced until he has completed a medical. The England international is due to travel to the United States on holiday and is not expected to have had his medical before then.
But Young, who had also been courted by Liverpool and Tottenham, has agreed to join United and, with an £18m deal in place for the Atlético Madrid goalkeeper David de Gea, it will take United's committed spending to £50m. United stand to make a loss of over £5m on Bebe after allowing the disappointing Portuguese winger to join Besiktas on a season-long loan with a view to a permanent £2m transfer.
Bebe, 20, made just seven appearances in all competitions for United after arriving in a £7.4m deal from Vitoria Guimaraes last August. Meanwhile, it has been confirmed Eric Cantona will take charge of New York Cosmos when they provide the opposition for Paul Scholes' testimonial at Old Trafford on 5 August.