Journalist and podcaster Conor McGilligan believes star man Kalvin Phillips could end up staying at Elland Road this summer amid transfer rumours linking him with Premier League champions Manchester City.
The Yorkshire team have stormed into the transfer window, making a number of signings including Brenden Aaronson and Marc Roca. However, perhaps the biggest news circulating the club has involved the possible departures of key men Phillips and Raphinha.
The former has been linked with City during the window as they look for a Fernandinho replacement, however, according to McGilligan, he now believes the ‘Yorkshire Pirlo’ could end up staying at the club despite the links to City and has slammed the notion Leeds have received a formal bid.
Unfortunately for him and Leeds fans, though, it later emerged that Leeds and City had agreed a fee for the midfielder.
Speaking prior to this development, McGilligan said on the One Leeds Fan Channel: “What I can say is there’s been nothing. Phil Hay reported that this morning [Wednesday] there’s been nothing from Manchester City, contrary to reports the other day saying that there had been a bid, and there’s some reports saying there’d been two bids. And some serious reports from the City side saying they’d put an official bid in on Sunday night.
“Phil Hay scuppered all that, said there’s not been any advancements from Manchester City yet. So, we’ll have to wait and see. Destabilising him, maybe, putting the thought in his head. But I don’t know about Kalvin.
“I mean, you’d expect him to go because it’s Man City, but Kalvin seems like a home bird – that’s all I’ll say on that.”
TIF Thoughts on McGilligan’s comments…
Given all the speculation, it is certainly interesting that McGilligan was of the opinion that Phillips will remain a Leeds player come the end of the window.
Whether he retains that opinion following the latest news would certainly be intriguing. Although an agreement is thought to have been reached, Phillips could, in theory, still reject City’s advances – however, The Athletic has suggested the England ace ‘has been keen on joining City since their interest emerged’, which would put paid to McGilligan’s hopes of Phillips sticking around.
Though while the intrigue of playing for the Premier League champions could entice Phillips to possibly move this summer, it would not be far-fetched to believe he could stay at Elland Road for another season under manager Jesse Marsch.
Back in May, it was reported that Phillips wanted to be at the club, stating: “I’ve made my intentions clear that I want to be at Leeds,” and despite the rumours, he believes “I’ll be happy at Leeds and always will be.”
Phillips struggled with fitness last season and therefore a fee of around £50m could end up tempting the Whites to sell, but for fans, it is good news to know one of your star players might be willing to stay after their horrendous season.