June 28, 2022

Guardiola is thought to be a fan of the Leeds midfielder

Manchester City have reportedly identified Kalvin Phillips as the replacement for outgoing midfielder Fernandinho, who will leave the club in the summer.

City have already made one marquee signing after confirming the arrival of Erling Haaland last week, and are looking to further bolster their squad following their recent Champions League disappointment.

As reported by the Daily Star, City are expected to rival the likes of Manchester United and Liverpool for Phillips’ signature, with the England international expected to cost in the region of £60m. However, the 26-year-old is unlikely to join United due to the strong rivalry between the Red Devils and his current club.

Pep Guardiola believes that Leeds man would be the perfect candidate to fill the void left by Fernandinho and thinks that he is one of the best holding midfielders in the Premier League.

The City boss is also reportedly an admirer of West Ham United’s Declan Rice, but acknowledges that he will command an signifiant transfer fee.

Phillips would ideally prefer to stay at Leeds

While Phillips is reluctant to leave his boyhood club, he knows that should Leeds fail in their bid to avoid relegation, he might have to leave the club to ensure his hopes of going to the World Cup aren’t affected by playing in the second tier.

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Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani has been holding off offering Phillips a new contract as Jesse Marsch’s side await their top-flight fate, but will look to offer the ‘Yorkshire Pirlo’ a deal worth £100,000 providing they stay up.

Phillips has been an integral part of Gareth Southgate’s England squad and was a regular in the Three Lions’ run to the final of the European Championships Final in 2020.

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