Phil Jones on defensive partner Blackett - 'He is a great defender'

Manchester United defender Phil Jones has been speaking about youngster Tyler Blackett.

Manchester United have not started the season like they might have hoped. Despite mass investment and the arrival of Louis van Gaal they have still struggled to find the form that was essentially expected when Sir Alex Ferguson was in charge.

LvG has tried to improve the squad but many were surprised to not see the Dutchman sign a centre-back this summer - with the likes of Ron Vlaar and Mats Hummels linked with a move to Old Trafford.

But despite the concerns over their defenders it was two of the back-three that finished first and second in the fans player of the month category this week.

Phil Jones, who has improved immensely after struggling in the opener against Swansea City, won the accolade while impressive youngster Tyler Blackett came in second.

The England under-21 international was impressive in pre-season and has been the main operator at the left side of a three man back-line.

Jones, as the winner, conducted an interview with the Manchester United website today - and he was asked about the performances of Blackett. And Jones admits he has been impressed:

"Yeah really impressed, he has come in and he has done a great job for such a young lad on a big stage at the start of the season. We forget about the pre-season tour as well, when he was terrific. He is a great lad and he is a great defender. He has good ability on the ball as well, so he has been terrific and he is another positive for us. He has got a big future if he keeps playing the way he is playing and progressing under the manager, then I am sure he will have a bright future ahead."

Blackett is now expected to lose his place in the first-team to £16 million newbie Marcos Rojo. The Argentine international is an identical style of player, and is set to usurp him.

But Blackett has been superb this term for somebody so young, thrown in at the deep end at one of the world's biggest clubs - who are also currently in turmoil.

He is now set to become a squad player rather than a starting defender - but Jones is in no doubt that Blackett has the assets to make it at Manchester United.

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