• Premier League

Jones: We can thrive with Van Gaal's tactics

ESPN staff
July 25, 2014
Van Gaal insists results always matter

Phil Jones believes Manchester United can thrive with new manager Louis van Gaal's three centre-back system.

Jones started alongside Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans in the back line as United began life under his management with a thumping 7-0 win over LA Galaxy and Van Gaal insisted the formation is here to stay.

"We played three at the back, with Luke [Shaw] and Antonio [Valencia] as wing-backs, and it worked," Jones was quoted as saying in the Guardian.

"It's a learning process, but we're getting used to it. This is the first time I've played three at the back - every manager has got his philosophy, and we're all pulling in the right direction."

Jones also stressed that he hoped to be able to succeed Rio Ferdinand or Nemanja Vidic, both of whom left Old Trafford this summer, as a regular in the centre of the United defence.

"That's ultimately what I want to be doing," he added. "Everyone is trying to impress, and hopefully we can start the season off well.

"We've lost two great defenders in Rio and Nemanja, but that's football and we move on. We've got good players to replace them, and hopefully we can all step up."

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