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Phil Jones optimistic of returning for Manchester United at weekend

The Guardian logo The Guardian 14/11/2017 Jamie Jackson
Phil Jones reacts as he suffers an injury in England’s game against Germany last week. © Action Plus/Getty Images Phil Jones reacts as he suffers an injury in England’s game against Germany last week.

Phil Jones is hopeful of recovering from the calf injury he suffered playing for England and being available for Manchester United’s late game against Newcastle United on Saturday.

The central defender was withdrawn by Gareth Southgate during Friday’s 0-0 draw with Germany after just 25 minutes, after what the manager indicated was a recurrence of the same problem that caused his substitution in United’s defeat at Huddersfield Town last month.

Related: José Mourinho’s game plan comes unstuck as Manchester United away goals dry up

After leaving the England squad on Monday, tests with United’s medical department has left Jones optimistic he can face Rafael Benítez’s side at Old Trafford.

Jones has established himself as first-choice under José Mourinho, and if the 25-year-old can play it will be a major boost for the manager, with United having lost their last game before the international break, 1-0 at Chelsea. The defeat left the Portuguese’s team eight points behind Manchester City, who are yet to lose, after 11 matches.

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