Premier League • England

Everton pushing for cost-effective Kalvin Phillips deal but facing major Man City snag

Kalvin Phillips of Manchester City applauds the fans

Kalvin Phillips of Manchester City applauds the fans

Everton are reportedly interested in signing Manchester City outcast Kalvin Phillips on a season-long loan deal for the 2024/25 campaign – but face a major snag in a bid to lure him to Goodison Park.

The 28-year-old is, arguably, at a crossroads in his career. Long gone are the days when Phillips, whose career skyrocketed after former Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa decided he would be better suited as a defensive midfielder in 2018, was seen as one of England’s most important players.

After leading Leeds to the Premier League in 2020 – ending a 16-year stay outside the English top-flight –  and scooping up England’s Player of the Year in 2021, the 5ft 10in player signed for City in an initial £42m move in 2022.

Phillips harboured desires to win the biggest trophies and make his mark in Pep Guardiola’s side. However, he struggled to bed into the Spaniard’s system and never looked like usurping Rodri in the heart of the Citizens’ midfield.

Following 18 difficult months where he made just six starts in 31 appearances, the 31-time capped England international headed out on loan to West Ham in January.

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But rather than being the lift he needed, Phillips’ spell with the Hammers turned into something of a disaster. He made costly mistakes, was sent off in his fourth game, and barely featured in the tail end of the campaign under manager David Moyes.

His lack of game time led to links with a return to his beloved Leeds, but the fact that City are keen to recoup as much money as possible from their initial outlay – along with the Whites’ failure to secure promotion back to the Premier League – means an Elland Road reunion is unlikely.

Everton eye Phillips loan move

Now, Phillips may be handed another Premier League lifeline as Sean Dyche’s Everton are interested in bringing him to Goodison Park on loan next season, reports BBC Sport.

Earlier this month, Everton’s Director of Football, Kevin Thelwell, said players “will be sold” this summer due to the club’s financial situation – where they were docked eight points for breaching profit and sustainability rules. Therefore, the Toffees will look to use the loan market.

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In a letter to the club’s fans: “The reality is, given the regulations in place and the Club’s current financial position, we have to trade well. Working within such tight financial parameters makes the job extremely difficult.

“Whilst we want to ensure that the team is as competitive as possible, we cannot lose sight of our central objective to protect the long-term stability of the Club.

“That does mean that players will be sold, and also that every tool at our disposal will be used to secure new additions to the squad, including utilisation of the loan market.

“Both Sean [Dyche] and I understand the responsibility we have – and that is a responsibility which has to be our priority. That may not be exciting to hear but, under our current circumstances, it is the right thing for Everton.”

That loan stance prove a hurdle in their bid to bring Phillips in, however, as City are keen to sell the midfielder for a ‘significant’ fee in the coming weeks and months.