Twitter has apologised to Phil Jones for mocking him on its official UK account.

His club, Manchester United, are understood to have complained to Twitter about the subsequently deleted post, with the social network apologising to both club and player.

The social media network says ‘being the target of online abuse is not easy to deal with’ on a dedicated help centre page about coping and reporting abuse.

Yet on Tuesday it engaged in such behaviour when taking aim at the centre-back, with its verified @TwitterUK account posting: "Name a better footballer than Phil Jones".

Lancashire Telegraph:

That received hundreds of retweets and likes before eventually being deleted.

Rovers Academy graduate Jones has endured a tough time with injuries, making just eight appearances this season, only two coming in the Premier League, with his last outing coming in an FA Cup win over Tranmere in January.

He wasn’t fit enough to travel with United for their Europa League matches this month, and has been linked with an exit from Old Trafford this summer.

A Twitter spokesperson said: “Our aim was to showcase our new product feature, conversation controls, which allows you to select who can reply to a Tweet.

“It was not our intention to cause upset and once we realised our mistake, we immediately deleted the Tweet.”

Jones, still only 28, has been with United for nine years since his move from Rovers for a fee in the region of £16m.

In that time he has clocked up 224 appearances and become a Premier League, FA Cup and Europa League winner. The defender has also won 27 caps for England.

He earned his move to United in 2011 after just 40 appearances in Rovers colours, his impressive Premier League debut against Chelsea coming March 21 2010.