Bielsa explains how Kalvin Phillips can improve; shrugs off probing question

Date published: Thursday 3rd December 2020 6:20

Kalvin Phillips TEAMtalk

Marcelo Bielsa believes Kalvin Phillips has got scope to improve his game, despite an almost flawless display against Everton.

The England man was the driving force for Leeds in the 1-0 win at Goodison Park. It was a performance which landed the local lad in the Premier League Team of the Week, with Garth Crooks tipping him for Liverpool.

“This kid reminds me of a young Bryan Robson, when the former Manchester United and England captain played for West Brom.

“Phillips can cover the ground, he’s not afraid to stick his foot in, and sees the pass,” said Crooks.

Phillips, 24, has only played seven Premier League games but he has already made his presence felt.

Gareth Southgate has called up Phillips for England and the midfielder has a real chance of making the Euro 2020 squad next summer.

Asked how he can get more from Phillips, Bielsa said: “To obtain the ball and distribute it, there’s two paths: one to recover the ball and after that managing the ball.

“The second path is to move into positions where he can receive the ball and distribute it. The more he moves to become free, the more he will shine.”

Bielsa was also asked about the roles of Ezgjan Alioski and Stuart Dallas who interchanged at Everton.




“They both played the majority of the game on the left-hand side. In this sector on the left-hand side there were three heights,” said the Argentinian boss. “The level where James Rodriguez moved, the height or level where Iwobi moved and the height or level of the pitch where Godfrey arrived. There were combinations of movement to attack and defend.

“The more advanced ones are Harrison and Raphinha and Alioski who was in front of Dallas and behind the winger. And Dallas who was the furthest one back.

Bielsa reluctant to judge

“The three of them had obligations to defend and attack and with the possibility to interchange functions. At the end of the game Dallas and Alioski started to change sides. This was a small proportion of the game.”

The Whites face old foes Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Saturday night and a win could lift them into fifth.

The United boss, who sees his side in mid-table with 14 points from 10 games, was asked how he rated his side’s start.

He replied: “I’m always a little reluctant to answer this question. If you observe, we had a favourable start to the season where the goals we conceded did not really affect the results because we were scoring plenty.

“Then there was a period where we conceded a lot and weren’t efficient in attack.

“The third period where we haven’t conceded goals, but created opportunities to win. Which three of these periods describes us? ”

READ MORE: Bielsa sends message to Lampard; names star who can unbalance Chelsea


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