Neil Redfearn has told the Yorkshire Post he is delighted Leeds United have signed Kalvin Phillips to a new contract.
The former Leeds boss worked with Phillips in the club's academy as a youngster.
Phillips is now Leeds' most important player, key to implementing Marcelo Bielsa's style of football.
Redfearn is thrilled to see Phillips land a new deal, and pleased to see Leeds make a smart decision.
He said: "I am chuffed for Kalvin and Leeds that he is staying with them and has got a five-year deal. He is someone they have got to build a side around – his improvement has been that good.
"Leeds want to put a marker down and try and get promoted and Kalvin is their number one asset and they have done the sensible thing and shown a bit of foresight and it has to be applauded."
Phillips made his debut under Redfearn, back at the end of the 2014/15 season against Wolves.
It was one of two first team appearances he made for Redfearn. He scored in the second, a defeat to Cardiff City.
Leeds are in third place, with Barnsley down in 21st.
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