Former Manchester United full-back Gary Neville has given a glowing review of Leeds United midfielder Kalvin Phillips.
This summer looks certain to see the Red Devils transformed. A new manager remains top of the club’s agenda, but their playing squad is also expected to undergo many changes.
The likes of Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard and Juan Mata are all set to move on once their contracts expire at the end of the season, paving the way for at least one new midfielder to arrive, and Neville believes Phillips would be the ideal candidate.
Speaking to Sky Sports about the Leeds United and England international, Neville, as quoted by MEN, said: “He runs, he tackles, he passes, he can defend, honestly, he’s fantastic.
“He’s likeable, he also has integrity when he speaks, you like watching him. He runs all day, the stats we see that he produces, the most pressures is a dream.
“The work you have to do as a defender and midfielder at Leeds is unreal but he really sets the tone, he’s a fantastic, fantastic player.”
Although the Red Devils are reportedly working on a deal to bring the 26-year-old to Old Trafford (MEN), getting a deal across the line could prove hugely problematic.
Not only is there a long-standing rivalry between both clubs, but Phillips has remained fiercely loyal to the side he has spent his entire career with.
Demonstrating his close connection with the Whites’ fanbase, Phillips, who spoke to Leeds United’s official website, three years ago, said: “It is amazing. I’m from Leeds and I’ve always known what the crowds are like. It is just an honour for me to pull on the White shirt every week and play in front of them. There are not many fans that you get who travel both home and away. The numbers away from home are ridiculous and we just want to reward them by getting back to the Premier League.”
Seeing the number 23 swap all-white for red is hard to imagine but it wouldn’t be the first time an Elland Road favourite has made a move to Old Trafford with the likes of Eric Cantona and Rio Ferdinand both risking the fans’ wrath in the past.
Nevertheless, regardless of whether or not United can reach an agreement with their rivals, one thing is for sure, after emerging as one of the league’s most effective defensive midfielders and likely to be available for less than Declan Rice, the Red Devils could do a lot worse than Phillips.