Nat Phillips had an amazing season for Liverpool after being thrusted into the starting 11 from not even being involved in the squad at the beginning of the season.
Even though Phillips helped Liverpool secure Champions League football for next season, there is some doubts whether he will be here next season or if Liverpool are going to cash in on the centre back.
Especially with the new signing of Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig and the return of Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip, but in a recent interview with The Echo, Phillips answered some of these questions and by the sounds of it, the 24-year-old wants to fight for his place in this Liverpool team next season.
“It’s no surprise (to see Konate signed). Liverpool is a huge club and they are always going to have huge competition for places,” Phillips acknowledged. “You always have to compete for your place in the team.
“Even though there is a lot of competition, I see it as another person to try and learn from. A new person’s game I get to see up close, see how they play and see if I can take anything from that.
“At Liverpool there is always going to be high competition for a place on the pitch. No matter who you are, you don’t have a right to play for them and certainly not myself, having only played a handful of games when the new boys came in.
Phillips then mentioned his centre back partner Ozak Kabak who he built a solid connection with while the Turkish International was on loan at Liverpool from Schalke.
“It didn’t surprise me (when Kabak and Davies were signed). I knew the situation the club was in in terms of personnel, centre-backs and injuries and we needed more players in that position.
“For me, it was just a case of when I get my opportunity to play as well as possible and do as much as I can to take it and make sure I retain the place. That’s how I approached it.
“Ozzy came in and did a good job. He helped us out massively. I don’t think we’d have finished the season the way we did if he hadn’t come over and helped us out so much.
“You want to be playing as much as possible but you have to earn it. There are occasions when you get on there by default because of injuries, but they don’t come along very often.
“If you want to play as often as possible, you need to embrace that fight and play to a high enough standard to hold off such competition.”
Even though Phillips was solid for Liverpool and proved his worth to the club and Klopp, his future is uncertain.
The 24-year-old confirmed that him and Jurgen Klopp are set for talks to decide what his future is going to be and Phillips admitted that he would love to stay at Liverpool but he understands he isn't going to be getting the game time he got this season.
He said he’s prepared to move on depending on the result of those discussions and the role that the club offer him.
Phillips went on to say, “We haven’t had a conversation about it up until now. I think the situation is, initially they didn’t anticipate me having the season and putting in the performances that I did do.
“Maybe where they might have thought I was just going to do a job and then they would be able to sell me and I would move on, now they’re having second thoughts. I’m not sure.
“I still need to have the conversations with them and just see if there is a role for me there and what role they would want me to play.
“It would depend on if they saw a role for me at Liverpool and then what role that would be. I would have to decide what is best for myself off the back of that.
“I have loved all of my time at Liverpool up until this moment, to have been taken in by the fans so much this year and have loved having the opportunity to play for the club.
“I have loved every minute of it and would love to carry on playing for the club. But I’ve also got to take into consideration what is best for my career, and that will depend on what role Liverpool see they do or don’t have for me and I’ll have to go from there.”
Whatever Phillips and the club decide, it has been a pleasure watching the Bolton Baresi play in a Liverpool shirt this season.
Phillips has left it all on the field and shown how much he cares about the club so whatever he decides we're sure Liverpool fans will support him for the rest of his career.