Leeds midfielder Kalvin Phillips faces around two months on the sidelines after undergoing surgery to repair a hamstring injury, it has emerged.
The England star hobbled off after 55 minutes against Brentford recently, leading to speculation that Phillips faces around eight weeks out. His absence will be cruelly felt by Leeds, who are currently 15th and have struggled during their second season back in the Premier League.
And now, as Leeds prepare to face Manchester City, The Athletic have confirmed Phillips has undergone surgery to repair the damage.
Their report reveals Phillips will indeed now be sidelined for two months. That means their talismanic star will be absent for a crucial run of games. However, should his comeback go to plan, he could return in time to face Manchester United on February 19.
Leeds, of course, will not want to look too far ahead and will continue to hope Adam Forshaw continues to excel in his absence.
In the meantime, he will be given five-star medical attention to ensure he returns back to his best.
Assessing the news that Phillips is out for two months, Noel Whelan insists it was vital he was sent for surgery.
“It’s a really sensible move,” he told Football Insider.
“We know how integral and important Kalvin is, and his value to this team. The injury demanded the surgery take place in order to sort it out properly.
“No one wants to be without their talisman. But Leeds United will also realise that having him long-term is better than playing with a Kalvin Phillips that might be in and out of the team with the same problem.
“It’s vitally important that he gets the treatment he needs. If that means we have to go without Kalvin for two months, but then we get him for the next 12 – then brilliant.”
Bielsa staying positive amid Phillips blow
Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa also refuses to be downbeat over Phillips’ absence. He, along with Patrick Bamford and Liam Cooper, are currently all sidelined with hamstring injuries.
Speaking before Saturday’s trip to Chelsea, however, Bielsa had an upbeat message.
“We are preparing ourselves with a lot of hope, whether that is drawing or winning. These hopes are pronounced as it is a very big opponent.
“To get points in these games gives us an added value. We will tackle each of those games with added excitement.”
“The adersity is a stimulant to help resolve situations. I understand there is a certain pessimism as the upcoming games are difficult. Instead of bringing back players, we have new absentees,” he contined.
“But when we play against big teams, I think there is an added strength.
“My position is one of optimism and fortitude. It’s the values I have by evaluating the team. We have optimism, the hope and the fight.
“I never say we are going to win, but I say we will always do our optimum to win.”