ROB Jones welcomes the competition for his Sheffield Wednesday spot.
The Owls have significantly strengthened the defensive department over the summer, bringing in three new players in Kieran Lee, Joe Mattock and Anthony Gardner.
Having watched Danny Batth return to Wolverhampton Wanderers following the expiry of his loan deal at Hillsborough, Wednesday manager Dave Jones is scouring the transfer market in search of another centre-half. The Star understands the Owls chief is keeping close tabs on Richard Wood.
Dave Jones boasts five recognised centre-backs in Gardner, Rob Jones, Miguel Llera, Mark Beevers and Reda Johnson.
And skipper Rob Jones, who won the Scottish League Cup with Hibernian, recognises he will have to hit top form to secure a regular starting berth.
Jones, who played over an hour of Wednesday’s 1-1 draw with Sheffield FC in midweek, said: “We’ve got five or six centre-halves and maybe there will be another one coming in. At the end of the day, the best two centre-halves will play, and you’ve just got to get yourself in a position where you feel you’ve done enough to get that starting spot for the first game of the season (against Derby).
“If not, you have to drive on and work as hard as possible because there’s competition all over the place here.”
In the Owls promotion season, Rob Jones was cautioned 10 times, meaning he served two bans.
After returning from suspension, he failed to dislodge Llera and Batth.
Together the duo helped the Owls keep three clean sheets in the final six matches as they pipped Sheffield United to the second automatic promotion place. Jones was an unused sub in their last home games.