Kalvin Phillips has revealed a surprise influence behind his football following his classy Euro 2020 debut.
The Leeds United midfielder blew everyone away with his performance during England’s Euro 2020 opener with Croatia, controlling the midfield and putting in a superb assist for Raheem Sterling to score the winner.
The 25-year-old is now the talk of the country, and it is not just because of his international form with the midfielder also performing excellently for Leeds United in the Premier League this season.
But the inspiration for his performances in the middle of the park might just surprise a few people.
That’s because the Leeds United and England star has selected a player who plays a very different kind of game to his in former Barcelona and Brazil star Ronaldinho.
“I think when I was younger there was a lot of players. You know like Zidane, but Ronaldinho is the one who comes to mind,” he told the England YouTube channel.
“Obviously, I don’t play like him, I don’t try to replicate what he did, but I know that he played with a smile on his face and a lot of enjoyment, and I try to do that as much as possible, so I’d probably say Ronaldinho.”
Phillips came through the academy at Leeds United and he has already racked up well over 250 appearances, but following his excellent performance in England’s tournament opener, he is already being linked with a move elsewhere.
Spanish giants Real Madrid have been linked with a shock move for the 25-year-old, along with Manchester United.
But Marcelo Bielsa will be hoping Phillips stays put ahead of next season when Leeds United will be looking to kick on from their impressive first season back in the top flight.