Leeds United may be in a ‘difficult’ position now that Manchester City have set their sights on Kalvin Phillips.
That’s according to sports journalist Pete O’Rourke, who was speaking to GiveMeSport.
The Daily Mail reported last week that Phillips tops the Premier League champions’ shortlist of potential replacements for Fernandinho, who is leaving the club. City are ‘expected to pursue’ the England midfielder, whom they believe to be a ‘perfect’ stylistic match for Pep Guardiola’s side, ‘in the coming weeks’.
Leeds told Phillips in December that they would like to open discussions over a new deal, but no agreement has been reached as of yet, with the 26-year-old’s contract due to expire in two years’ time.
O’Rourke has said that Leeds will be doing all that they can to persuade Phillips to remain at Elland Road, but warned that the midfielder may find the opportunity of working with Guardiola hard ‘to turn down’.
In quotes published at 8pm on Sunday night, the journalist told GiveMeSport: “There are lots of reports suggesting Manchester City are monitoring his situation right now as well.
“That might make it difficult for Leeds to secure his long-term future because if you get the opportunity to move to Manchester City, it’s a pretty hard one to turn down, joining the champions and possibly working under Pep Guardiola.
“Leeds, I’m sure, will be pulling out all the stops now to try and convince Phillips to stay at the club.”
The news of City’s interest in Phillips will come as no surprise to the Leeds hierarchy.
He was named England’s Player of the Year for 2021, edging Chelsea star Mason Mount and City’s own Raheem Sterling, while last December he finished second behind Raphinha when Whites fans voted for their player of the year, collecting 24% of the vote.
He could well be tempted to move to the Etihad Stadium after admitting in 2020 that he was ‘mesmerised’ by Guardiola and the football that his team plays.
In other news, another Leeds man could be about to leave.
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