The Lowdown: Phillips profiled
As per the Whites’ official website, the 26-year-old is a product of the Elland Road youth system, working his way up through the ranks to make his first-team debut for the club back in 2015 and going in to make 234 appearances for Jesse Marsch’s side.
The maestro has become an integral feature of his hometown club’s starting XI over the years after helping them gain promotion to the Premier League in 2020. However, his impressive performances appear to have caught the eye of many top-flight rivals, with the champions among those looking to secure his signature.
The Latest: Man City preparing bid for Phillips
In an article published by 90min, it is claimed that City are now ‘readying a bid’ for Phillips after making ‘several enquiries’ about the Leeds midfielder.
The source stated that Etihad Stadium scouts have been ‘hugely impressed’ with their target’s progress since the Whites’ promotion two years ago, with Pep Guardiola making his admiration for the 19-cap England international ‘clear’.
It’s reported that City are currently ‘conducting background checks’ to decide whether or not they fully believe the 26-year-old be a good fit in the dressing room ahead of an ‘opening bid’.
Phillips has insisted that he would be ‘happy to stay’ in Yorkshire, but the source suggests that a move to the Etihad ‘does appeal’ to him.
The Verdict: Ideal Fernandinho replacement
With it being confirmed that Fernandinho will be leaving City this summer, the club need to find a suitable replacement for the Brazil veteran in the middle of the park, and the £45m-rated Leeds talisman could well be the perfect candidate.
Despite only playing 23 times this season, mainly due to a long-term hamstring injury, Phillips has still been an absolute rock in the Whites’ midfield. He averaged 2.7 tackles and 1.2 interceptions per Premier League game (via WhoScored), demonstrating that he can be hugely effective at breaking up opposition attacks.
Would Phillips be a good signing for City?
Leeds probably wouldn’t be able to match any offer from City if one is to materialise in the coming weeks.
Therefore, it may be a case of the Elland Road academy graduate – who was once dubbed an “exceptional” player by former Leeds and Man City defender Danny Mills – having to decide whether to commit his future to his boyhood club or make the switch to the Etihad, where he could go on to achieve big things at the highest level in years to come.
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