Micah Richards has suggested on BBC Radio 5 Live that Kalvin Phillips needs to leave Leeds United in the January transfer window for one reason – to gain a place in the England side ahead of Euro 2020.
Phillips, 23, has been moulded into a holding midfielder ever since Marcelo Bielsa arrived at Elland Road. The Argentine manager has changed Phillips from a number 10, into a number four.
The move has paid dividends. Phillips has shone for Leeds, earning a place in last season’s Championship Team of the Year and being linked with a £30million move to Aston Villa at times. He has since signed a new deal at Leeds.
Former England defender Richards was asked what Phillips would have to do in order to play for England ahead of Euro 2020, and he claimed Phillips would have to leave Elland Road in January to a team that go on a run.
“It all depends on what team he goes to,” Richards said, when asked if Phillips should leave Leeds in January. “If he goes into a struggling side, he probably won’t get into the England team. If he joins Manchester City or Liverpool, then he might.
“He’s a Leeds lad. He’s very, very good actually, top. If he goes into a team which has a run for six months, potentially he can get into the England side. But you have got to have a bit of faith with the players Southgate has picked.”
TBR’s view – What will Phillips do in January – or next summer?
The January transfer window is nearly upon us but Phillips is unlikely to abandon a promotion push at Leeds, even if it means he would be on the plane for Euro 2020. The midfielder has age on his side, and England is a possibility in the future.
Born and bred in Leeds, Phillips will be desperate to help his side return to the top. Leeds certainly have a chance this season, sitting in third and just two points off the top. But if they fail to gain promotion, Phillips is expected to leave.