New England Soccer Today

Jones: I am always open to ideas

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

After going the full 90 at center back in Tuesday 1-1 draw to Honduras, U.S. international and Revolution midfielder Jermaine Jones spoke about the switch from his customary spot to the backline.

“I am always open to some ideas,” Jones told the media after the match. “I know Jurgen Klinsmann now for a long time, and he sometimes has some crazy ideas, and he asked me and at first I was a bit [hesitant]. But I have no problem with that, the position is OK, and maybe I’ll have some fun in the next few years.”

No doubt the change was made with the Revolution midfielder’s international future in mind. Jones will turn 33 next month, and with the center back spots likely to be under scrutiny during the upcoming cycle, the move to the backline could lengthen his career with the National Team.

“It is a thought that he is now 32 – is he now the box-to-box player for the next four years on turf fields? I don’t know,” Klinsmann told the media after the match. “I doubt it a little bit. That might be a better role over a longer stretch of time, so it was good for us to test that out.”

Interestingly, Jones showcased an increasing inclination to drop back during the Revolution’s recent matches. While he’s had no issue going forward since joining the club in late-August, he’s also been seen organizing from the back and opening the channels of communication with his teammates from a deep position.

“Obviously, it takes a little bit of time and a little bit of understanding with the other center back and the fullback,” Klinsmann said. “But Jermaine has played there before – he has played it a couple of times at Schalke and played it at Besiktas, as well. I was not worried about it all.”

Jones made a trio of key tackles in Tuesday’s match. He was also cautioned for a sharp foul on Alberth Elis in the 62nd minute, and was the nearest defender when Maynor Figueroa slammed home the game-tying header from Mario Martinez’s free kick.

While it wasn’t a perfect night for the midfielder-turned-defender by any means, Jones doesn’t believe the transition will be difficult if he sees more time at center back in the future.

“I think this position is one of the easiest positions on the field if you have experience, and you can read the game a little bit, and you are physical,” Jones said. “And I have no problem to battle in games. That position is easier to play than playing number six.”

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