Ferguson: Jones can be better than Terry

Sir Alex Ferguson believes that Phil Jones has the potential to outshine former England captain John Terry.

Jones has yet to cement a place in Manchester United's central defence since joining from Blackburn Rovers for £16.5 million in the summer 2011, but Ferguson has used the youngster in several positions and feels Jones has a very bright future.

"He's got more in his locker than Terry had to be honest with you, but Terry gathered experience and became a fantastic central figure for Chelsea," said Ferguson.

"Obviously, he was the main man at Chelsea but, as a young player, I think John would be the first to admit he didn't have the pace of Jones."

Terry is the most successful captain in Chelsea's history and has been regarded as one of the best centre-backs in the world. However, Ferguson believes Jones' versatility for both club and country can see him outshine Terry in the future.

"He's a very versatile boy, while John is a centre-back. Jones is proving himself everywhere.

"He can play anywhere. He is quick, two-sided and reads the game well. He's competitive and has got a great change of pace going forward so the boy has done very well."

Both Terry and Jones have spent a large chunk of the season in the treatment room with knee injuries, but both look to be working their way back into first-team action at a crucial stage in the season.

Terry played the full 90 minutes, his first since November, against Brentford in the FA Cup, while Jones has regained form in key clashes against Fulham over the weekend and Spurs in the league.

By Michael Lowdon