With Manchester City finally wrapping up a deal for long-standing transfer target Erling Haaland as their ideal successor to club legend Sergio Aguero, another major priority remains scouring the market for a defensive midfielder.
While there is no denying that Rodri has been in unplayable touch throughout the ongoing campaign, Fernandinho’s plans to depart the Etihad Stadium in favour of a return to Brazil next summer means Manchester City are thin in one of the most important positions on the pitch.
However, it seems as if Manchester City officials - including manager Pep Guardiola - already have a player in mind that could prove to be an extremely handy addition to their squad next season.
As per a report by Jeremy Cross of the Daily Star, Pep Guardiola has now ‘targeted’ Leeds United’s Kalvin Phillips as a potential replacement for the outgoing Fernandinho in the summer.
In addition, the Spanish tactician is said to believe that the 26 year-old would be the ‘ideal’ signing, and rates the England international as highly as some of the best holding midfielders in the Premier League.
It has also been reported that Manchester City will face competition from fellow English giants Manchester United and Liverpool, in a deal that could potentially be worth £60 million.
Further details claim that Pep Guardiola has ‘watched’ Kalvin Phillips in action ‘several times’ this season, and favours his acquisition over West Ham’s £150 million-rated Declan Rice - who he deems ‘too expensive’.
An additional report from David McDonnell of the Mirror also states that apart from the Catalan boss tuning in to watch the gifted midfielder, Manchester City have also sent scouts to watch the England international on a number of instances.
Interestingly, the report also states that those who knows Kalvin Phillips are aware that the player would find it ‘impossible’ to reject the chance of playing under Pep Guardiola and have the golden opportunity of playing Champions League football.
With the potential transfer making sense on all levels for both player and club, only time will tell how serious Manchester City are about adding Kalvin Phillips to their ranks in a summer that could potentially see a major squad refresh.