Last chance saloon: Five players who deserve one last loan move before their futures are sealed
Wastage of talent is a recurring theme in every sport and is similarly very often seen in the world of football. For every prodigy stepping up to his anticipated level, there are many more who fail to do so.
Sometimes a player may just not come to terms with the pressure and demands expected of him at the top level. But sometimes, a final push, the last hurrah before his fate is sealed can turn his life around.
As evidence, look no further than the outcasts of Pep Guardiola’s reign at Manchester City – Joe Hart and Samir Nasri. Shipped out on loan to Torino and Sevilla respectively, the pair have revived their careers in different surroundings this season. The resurgence in their form will most likely not have any significant impact on their career at City in the future, but at the very least, it has boosted their stock and highlights their ability to continue at the top level.
Similarly, this article states the five players in desperate need of a geographical change to reinvigorate their careers. For some, it could lead to a better future at their current clubs itself, and for the rest, it would be a good career move to boost their value and more importantly, their confidence and form.
#1 Phil Jones
It is unimaginable that a few years ago, based on potential, he was heralded by Sir Alex Ferguson as possibly one of the best players to play for Manchester United and while watching Phil Jones, Sir Bobby Charlton was reminded of another United legend, Duncan Edwards.
Purchased for over £16 million, he displayed his potential in his early United career as a ‘jack of all trades’ with excellent performances even against the likes of Real Madrid. With his reputation burgeoning as the replacement for United’s defensive duo Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand, frequent injuries and a dramatic dip in performance stalled his career.
Fast forward to 2016, and he is still on the fringes of the squad competing with the likes of academy graduate Axel Tuanzebe for a spot in the line-up in the Europa League.
With starting XI chances hard to come by, it is time for Jones to grab any sort of chances that may come his way to get one final chance before he is shipped off to a mid-table Premier League team.
But instead of hoping to get a game in the League Cup or Europa League, it would be highly beneficial for him to gamble by going out on loan for the rest of the season in January. Hull City and Sunderland, with two former Manchester United staffers at the helm, would be ideal for Jones, but both clubs seem doomed to relegation. Instead, Swansea and Stoke City both require additional talented bodies at the back and could provide Jones with a decent setup until June 2017.
Ideal destinations – Stoke City and Swansea.