AMSTERDAM – Schalke midfielder Jermaine Jones has begun searching for a new employer, with Major League Soccer among the possible destinations.
The Bundesliga side has revealed it is willing to let the veteran leave during the current transfer window, with his agent then hinting to German paper Bild that his client could be snared for free or next to it.
While Jones is expected to weigh European options, MLSsoccer.com has learned that the US international also recently had discussions with at least one American club, according to sources on both sides of the Atlantic who are familiar with the negotiations.
"I could not tell Jones that he'd have a guaranteed starting spot in the second half of the season," Schalke boss Jens Keller told reporters on Monday to explain the decision. "He was professional about being benched during the first half of the season, but with a World Cup on the horizon, and at the age of 32, it might have become a bit more difficult."
For the current campaign, Jones has worked 14 league matches and 22 overall. He has played all five Champions League contests in which he was eligible, missing three through suspensions. However, he has stayed behind while the Miners set up midseason camp in Qatar to field interest for a transfer.
The Miners stand seventh at the winter break, out of the last Europa League spot by goal differential. With or without Jones, they return to Bundesliga action with a Jan. 26 trip to Hamburg.