Kalvin Phillips

Manchester City have confirmed the £45million signing of Kalvin Phillips from Leeds United on a six-year deal.

The midfielder is the third arrival at the Etihad this summer after Erling Haaland’s £51million move from Borussia Dortmund and the free transfer of goalkeeper Stefan Ortega as Pep Guardiola brings in reinforcements ahead of City’s Premier League title defence.

The 26-year-old will wear the No 4 shirt at the Etihad following his move after eight seasons with boyhood club Leeds United.

Phillips said: ‘I am absolutely delighted to have joined Manchester City.

‘City have again proved to be the best team in the country with an amazing squad and a manager in Pep Guardiola who is rightly considered to be the finest in the world.

‘To be able to play under Pep and learn from him and his coaching staff as well as be part of such a fantastic squad is a prospect that I am incredibly excited about.

‘City are a world-class Club with world-class staff and facilities and it’s a dream come true to have joined the Club.

‘Now I can’t wait to get started and to look to try and help the team to go on and achieve more success.’

The top-flight champions reportedly agreed a fee of £42m plus a further £3m in add-ons with Leeds in June but the player’s holiday delayed the transfer.

The England international underwent a medical at the club last week as he donned a City jacket for the occasion.

Sportsmail reported that talks were expected to take place following England’s Nations League fixtures and negotiations accelerated after Phillips changed agents.

Gabriel Jesus’s £45m departure from City to join Arsenal on a five-year deal was also confirmed on Monday.

Sportsmail understands City have used the funds from the sale of the Brazilian to seal a move for Phillips.

Phillips is a boyhood Leeds fan who has been at the club since the age of 14 and made 235 appearances for the Whites, scoring 14 goals.

He was also an integral part of Gareth Southgate’s England side that reached the final of Euro 2020 last year and has 23 international caps.

He had indicated last season that he would be willing to stay at Elland Road beyond the end of his current contract that expires in 2024, but talks over a new deal had not been forthcoming.

Aston Villa and Newcastle United registered their interest in signing the 26-year-old, while Leeds rejected a £55million offer from West Ham in January.

All three remained keen but Phillips only wanted to leave the Whites for what he viewed as a significant step up.

The challenge of a move to the Premier League champions and the prospect of Champions League football was appealing.

On the opportunity to play in the Champions League, Phillips said: ‘I am very excited. Obviously, it is a big step for me after playing in the Premier League and the Euros.

‘I have seen the way that previous City teams have played in the Champions League and how well they have done.

‘Last year obviously didn’t quite work out in the last 30 seconds which was heart-breaking for many Manchester City fans and players, so hopefully we can go one further and win it this time.’

Phillips is excited at the prospect of working with Pep Guardiola, who has heard positive feedback from his friend Marcelo Bielsa, the former Leeds coach, who did so much to develop Phillips into a player of international repute.

Leeds were resigned to losing Phillips this summer but already appear to have his replacement lined up in Darko Gyabi.

Gyabi will move in the opposite direction to Phillips in a £5m deal from City after the 18-year-old midfielder underwent a medical last week.

Leeds have already signed Marc Roca from Bayern Munich and, despite a pending agreement for Gyabi, have been actively looking for another holding midfielder with Red Bull Leipzig’s Tyler Adams one of the names under discussion.

They also expect improved offers for wantaway winger Raphinha after rejecting Arsenal’s bid of £30m plus add-ons earlier this week. Tottenham and Chelsea are also interested in the Brazilian who is valued at £65m.

Despite the funds coming in, Leeds are not expected to be rash with their spending. PSV Eindhoven’s Cody Gakpo and Adama Traore of Wolves are on their list of targets as is Bruges striker Charles de Keletaer though the latter is considered too expensive at £35m and has interest from AC Milan.

Jesse March also wants to add an experienced goalkeeper, with Watford’s Ben Foster among names mentioned, and a left-back.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here