Kalvin Phillips is likely to leave Manchester City in January amid interest from several Premier League clubs
Long-term Aston Villa target Kalvin Phillips has been advised to leave Manchester City in January by former Liverpool and Real Madrid winger Steve McManaman.
McManaman, who ended his career with City in 2005, feels Phillips needs to move on from the Premier League champions in order to secure a spot in Gareth Southgate’s England squad for Euro 2024 in Germany.
Phillips’ £42m from Leeds United to Man City has not gone to plan for the holding midfielder, who has been constantly kept on the fringes by Pep Guardiola. The former Barcelona boss also admitted earlier this month he had not been able to get the best out of the player in the same way Marcelo Bielsa had.
Phillips has been linked with Newcastle United and Everton ahead of the January window while Villa have held a long-term interest in the player.
“You have to play for your club if you’re going to play for your country,” McManaman told Betfred. “If Manchester City get three injuries, Kalvin gets in the team and plays continuously between now and the end of the season, then of course he can start for England at Euro 2024, but he needs to guarantee game time for himself.
“If Pep Guardiola is playing Rico Lewis, who’s a right-back, in the centre of midfield instead of Kalvin, then unfortunately that speaks for itself. He has to get out, he has to play football, he has to impress and he has to show everyone what an amazing footballer he is. If he can do that, then he could be in England’s starting eleven at Euro 2024.”
Speaking about the midfielder, Guardiola said after the most recent international break that Phillips was in charge of his own future. He said: “I never change. I said a few months ago, but after that they have to agree with the club. My opinion is my opinion, the last word belongs to the club.
“If he decides to do it [leave], then do it. If the agreement is not done, then he stays. He’s behaving incredibly. One of the most generous players I’ve ever seen honestly, as I don’t want to compliment when players don’t play matches. Others are maybe problems in locker room – it’s completely the opposite.
“Every time he goes to national team with Gareth [Southgate] I’m the happiest man in the world. When he plays it’s a benefit for me. I don’t know what will happen with Kalvin because when the transfer window is open, nobody knows.”