Things look brighter for Jones

Manchester United are hopeful Phil Jones will shrug off an ankle injury and declare himself fit for Saturday's FA Cup tie at Liverpool.

It did not look good for Jones when he hobbled out of the opening stages of United's 2-1 win at Arsenal on Sunday, with Sir Alex Ferguson claiming after the match that the teenager would be sidelined for a few weeks.

However, United assistant manager Mike Phelan on Tuesday told BBC Radio Manchester: "Phil's character is very good. He is disappointed that, over the last few weeks, he seems to have limped around the football field quite a bit. But he usually manages to recover, so we're optimistic he can do the same again."

United could certainly do with some good news on the injury front.

Skipper Nemanja Vidic and midfielder Darren Fletcher have already been ruled out for the remainder of the season.

England Under-21 star Tom Cleverley, upon whom so much faith has been invested by Ferguson, has featured just twice since September.

Ashley Young has been out since the pre-Christmas trip to Fulham, Michael Owen is making slow progress from a thigh strain and Nani left the Emirates Stadium with his foot in protective casing.

In addition, Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick are also injury doubts, while Rio Ferdinand is struggling to overcome a back complaint.

"We are not in the greatest state that we possibly could be in ahead of in the next four or five games," said Phelan.

"However, we can call on all our experience and resources we have at this football club. We'll have to do that in the coming weeks."

Source: PA

Source: PA