Leeds ace is perfect successor for Henderson at Liverpool, says pundit

Kalvin Phillips TEAMtalk

BBC pundit Garth Crooks says Kalvin Phillips would be a perfect replacement for Liverpool skipper Jordan Henderson.

Crooks picked Leeds kingpin Phillips in his team of the week after his performance in the 1-0 win at Everton.

Phillips put in a masterful performance and even compared the midfielder to Manchester United legend Bryan Robson.

But Crooks believes Phillips, who has been capped four times by Gareth Southgate for England, is destined for bigger things.

The 24-year-old may have only played seven Premier League games but Crooks thinks he could be perfect for Liverpool’s engine room.

Henderson, 30, returned to the Liverpool side in the draw at Brighton. He was a second-half replacement for Neco Williams.

The former Sunderland man is under contract until 2023, but such are Jurgen Klopp’s demands from his side it’s unlikely Henderson will be around at Anfield after that.

And if Klopp is on the lookout for a long-term successor then Crooks says Phillips could be the man.

“Leeds missed Kalvin Phillips against Leicester and Crystal Palace, but not against Everton,” wrote Crooks.

“The England international is making a name for himself, and was far too sharp for the Toffees.



“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. He doesn’t immediately grab your attention but given time you begin to realise the enormous contribution he’s making to the game.

“I think he’s the perfect replacement for Jordan Henderson and I don’t mean just for England.”

Phillips was a huge part of Leeds’ promotion from the Championship last season.

He was linked with a £25m move to Aston Villa at the start of 2019/20, but instead signed a new deal at Elland Road.

Phillips penned a five-year contract and is under contract until 2024 and on around £50,000 a week.

But Leeds might well be forced to offer Leeds-born Phillips an improvement on that contract, if some of the Premier League’s big guns come knocking.

Phillips moving up the England pecking order

Three Lions boss Southgate was watching Phillips at Goodison Park.

And pundit Stephen Warnock thinks the Whites star is moving up in the England pecking order.

“It was magnificent from Phillips (against Everton) and Gareth Southgate will be delighted with his performances as well,” Warnock told Sky Sports News.

“And I think he has a big decision to make who he plays in that holding position, whether it be him or Declan Rice.

“Personally, I think Phillips is (ahead of him). I think the quality that he shows both going forward and his ability to start attacks, and his understanding of breaking up the play. I think he has a better passing range than Declan Rice.”