Alfie McCalmont progress makes Leeds' Kalvin Phillips decision tougher

Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa takes his seat before the match during the Pre-season Friendly match between York City and Leeds United on July 10, 2019 in York, England.

Leeds United reportedly want £30 million for Kalvin Phillips amid Premier League interest in the midfielder.

11th May 2019, Pride Park, Derby, England; EFL Championship football, playoff semi final 1st leg, Derby County versus Leeds United; Kalvin Phillips of Leeds United warms up for the game

While many believe that keeping Kalvin Phillips is going to be crucial if Leeds want to put themselves in the promotion race once again next season, there did seem to be a small number of fans who suggested that the Whites should sell if their reported asking price is met.

The Sun reports that Leeds want £30 million for the 23-year-old with Aston Villa eyeing a move after his outstanding performance against Jack Grealish at Elland Road towards the end of last season.

 

It did still appear that the majority of Leeds fans however, felt that selling Phillips should not be option at any price. He was arguably the most important player in Bielsa's system last season and should only get better as he gains more experience in the role. 

But after seeing Alfie McCalmont's performance during Leeds' first pre-season friendly on Wednesday, perhaps it may be fair to assume that a greater number of fans would be receptive to the idea of selling Phillips if Villa do offer £30 million before this summer's deadline.

Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa takes his seat before the match during the Pre-season Friendly match between York City and Leeds United on July 10, 2019 in York, England.

Of course, it would be wrong to get too carried away with a performance during a friendly against York City. And McCalmont is still some way off being anywhere near ready to replace Phillips.

But the 19-year-old was outstanding in the 5-0 win. And given that he was regularly one of the shining lights in an under-23 side that enjoyed so much success last season, there is every reason to believe that McCalmont can follow the likes of Jamie Shackleton and Jack Clarke into the first-team on a regular basis this term.

Kalvin Phillips (23) of Leeds Utd during the Sky Bet Championship Play off Semi Final 1st leg match between Derby County and Leeds United at the Pride Park, Derby on Saturday 11th May 2019.

And if the club are willing to use the £30 million on signings during the remaining weeks of the window, then Leeds could have a chance to be in a stronger position after selling Phillips. 

Leeds must not sell Phillips if Villa are unwilling to meet their valuation. And there is absolutely no guarantee that the Whites will be able to put themselves in a better position if he is sold for the full asking price. 

But McCalmont's emergence provides reason for cautious optimism at this stage. And given how impressive he has been over the last year - and on his first-team bow this week - perhaps there will be a few more supporters who would be open to the idea of selling Phillips, as long as they are offered £30 million.

Have something to tell us about this article?

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch