Former Leeds United Star Tops European Giants Wishlist

Former Leeds United star Kalvin Phillips has emerged as a top winter target for European giants Juventus, according to TEAMtalk.

The 27-year-old rose to prominence at Elland Road, emerging from the academy to become a central point of the Whites’ midfield. He played a key role in their Championship title winning campaign in 2019/20, helping the club return to the Premier League for the first time since 2004.

His form during that season earned him his first England cap and he became a staple of Gareth Southgate’s squad as he continued to impress in the top tier, with Leeds’ proving to be the surprise package of the 2020/21 season. However, the Yorkshire side were unable to build on their momentum and the following year saw them battle relegation, ultimately surviving on the final day in dramatic circumstances.

A big-money move beckoned and champions Manchester City game knocking, eventually forking out £42 million for the midfielder’s services in the summer of 2022. Phillips has struggled at the Etihad though and made just 21 appearances in all competitions as Pep Guardiola’s side became the second English side to win a treble of the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League.

This season has started in similar fashion and he has played just 89 minutes of league football in the Blues’ opening 12 fixtures, leading to speculation that 31-capped international will look to move on in January. With Euro 2024 set for the end of the season, Phillips knows that regular game time is required to book his spot in Southgate’s squad.

A number of top flight clubs have been linked, including Arsenal, Liverpool, Newcastle United and West Ham United, whereas 14-time Champions League winners Real Madrid are also said to be interested. According to TEAMtalk though, Juventus are the latest team to enter the race.

The Old Lady have been rumoured to have been interested in Arsenal’s Thomas Partey as they look to strengthen their midfield in the New Year. They currently sit second in Serie A and are chasing their first league title in four years. Reinforcements are being targeted and it is said that the Ghana international’s injury concerns plus his lack of potential availability in January due to the African Cup of Nations mean that Phillips is now the preferred option.

Juventus face a tough battle in order to head the queue, but one thing that is looking increasingly likely is that Phillips’ nightmare stint at Manchester City is coming to an end.

Writer’s View

Manchester City’s signing of Kalvin Phillips in 2022 raised a few eyebrows, particularly as they already possessed an embarrassment of riches in the centre of the park. Still, few can begrudge the England international for taking the risk and despite his lack of playing time, his stock remains high.

Whilst Juventus are one of many interested parties, it is likely that a move to another Premier League team beckons, although City may not be willing to strengthen a direct title rival in either Arsenal or Liverpool. Could they be tempted to loan him out to the continent?

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