Former England defender Micah Richards has suggested that Leeds United midfield star Kalvin Phillips may have to leave the club in January if he wants a chance of being in the England squad for Euro 2020 according to an interview on BBC Radio 5Live.
Phillips has become an integral part of Marco Bielsa’s side over the past couple of seasons in particular but Richards believes that he would need to depart Elland Road should he wish to make a late challenge for Euro 2020.
The holding midfielder has shone for Leeds and was in last season’s Championship Team of the Year and has been linked with a big money move to both Aston Villa and Manchester United in recent months.
Phillips has signed a new deal at the Whites but this contains a release clause of around £20million should they not win promotion this season.
When asked if Phillips should leave in January, Richards said: “It all depends on what team he goes to. If he goes into a struggling side, he probably won’t get into the England team. If he joins Manchester City or Liverpool, then he might.”
“He’s a Leeds lad. He’s very, very good actually, top. If he goes into a team which has a run for six months, potentially he can get into the England side. But you have got to have a bit of faith with the players Southgate has picked.”
Despite these claims from Richards, it remains unlikely that the 23-year-old would abandon his hometown club halfway through the season when they are aiming to get promoted.
With him still in his early 20’s, there is plenty of time for Phillips to put himself in Gareth Southgate’s thoughts for an international place and with less than nine months until the Euro’s begin, it is an unlikely scenario that Southgate would be willing to take a gamble on a player with no Premier League experience for such an important tournament.