Mourinho ready to sell Jones, Smalling in major defensive shake-up


The decision reportedly came after the 1-0 defeat against Newcastle where neither player performed well.

Defensively they were woeful, too.

The centre-back was lucky not to be penalised five minutes before the end of the period when he brought down Dwight Gayle with a clumsy challenge on the edge of the box. Moreover, the England worldwide picked up a yellow card for simulation. The defender posted a video of him diving into a swimming pool back in January, complaining that diving doesn't belong in the modern game.

A Matt Ritchie goal was enough to secure Newcastle an important victory and Neville was quick to point out that Smalling and Jones lack decisiveness and are both liabilities because of it.

Former United defender Phil Neville slammed Smalling and Jones at the weekend.

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'Speaking on Match of the Day 2 on Sunday, Neville said: 'They have got the best defensive record because they have the best goalkeeper in the world in David de Gea and (Nemanja) Matic out in front who protects them really well.

It's not the first time the two defenders have been linked with a move away from United, but despite the rumours past year Mourinho persisted with Smalling and Jones in the hope they would adapt to his way of thinking. No, but they created a nervousness and a tension.

While Newcastle fans and pundits may criticise the referee for the decision, United fans have turned on Smalling for a horrendous display and what could have been a costly mistake. He hasn't played for three months and United are hopeful that he might return, as they prepare to make a trip to Sevilla for the round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League.

While Mourinho has decided his defence needs strengthening, United actually have the best goals-against record in the Premier League this season.

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