Chelsea chasing the 'new John Terry' at Rovers
Published 23:00 07/11/10 By Alan Nixon
Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti is leading the chase for Blackburn Rovers starlet Phil Jones - the most wanted English youngster in football.
Ancelotti likes the look of the 'new John Terry' and sent top spy Frank Arnesen to make a personal check on the home-grown Rover at the weekend.
Jones is already playing for England under-21s as a centre half but is turning out for Sam Allardyce's side in midfield as he learns his trade. He is seen as a future full international 'number five.'
Ancelotti has claimed he will not be making signings in January but could jump quicker as all of the top clubs circle Ewood Park, with Chelsea also aware that they have not properly replaced Ricardo Carvalho and are a man down in that area.
The double winners would have to come up with over £10million for the 18-year-old who has already started 18 Premier League games - because their Big Four rivals are keen.
Arsenal made an inquiry for Jones in the last window before looking elsewhere, but they may be back. Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is also a known admirer.
And Manchester City - the club they all fear - had leading talent-spotter Gary Worthington at the win over Wigan and they are always in the market for the top local players.
Jones is vital to Blackburn's survival fight this season and Rovers will not want to lose him. However a major cash bid could test them - and the Indian-based VH Group, their prospective owners.
VH are due to put money into the transfer kitty in the New Year and they will try to avoid selling Jones at a time when they are hoping to make a good impression with the supporters.
The chicken conglomerate are due to conclude their takeover in the next fortnight, with chairman John Williams set to be asked to stay - but top agent Jerome Anderson may be given an official role at the club too.