Manchester United confident of signing Phil Jones from Blackburn Rovers despite Liverpool's hijack bid

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Manchester United hope to complete the £16.5 million signing of Phil Jones on Sunday, despite an audacious last-ditch attempt by Liverpool to hijack the move.
United are confident they will finalise the deal with Blackburn to buy Jones, who is due to play for England Under-21s against Spain in Denmark on Sunday evening.

Jones passed his United medical and agreed personal terms with the club on Wednesday but the completion of the deal was held up by Blackburn’s Indian owners, who hoped to get a bigger fee for the 19-year-old defender.

On Saturday morning, the transfer took a dramatic twist when Liverpool stepped in with a counter offer for Jones, who has a clause in his contract allowing him to leave for offers of more than £16 million.

Liverpool’s bid is believed to have been around £6 million more than that of United, and was therefore welcomed by Blackburn’s owners, who dispute United’s interpretation of the clause.

They think an offer of £16 million merely allows a club to talk to Jones, and have decided that if the player is determined to leave, they should aim to have an auction for his services.

But Jones has told Blackburn he wants to join United rather than Liverpool, and the Old Trafford club are convinced that the detail of Jones's contract means they will succeed in completing his signing within a matter of hours.

United have already beaten Liverpool to another mutual summer transfer target, Aston Villa winger Ashley Young

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