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Kalvin Phillips: West Ham and Man City agree loan deal for midfielder

Kalvin Phillips has made just 31 appearances for Man City since a £45m transfer from Leeds in July 2022; Pep Guardiola admitted in December he cannot envisage the England midfielder in his team; a medical is expected to take place this week at West Ham, who have an option to buy

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The best of Kalvin Phillips for Manchester City and Leeds United in the Premier League.

West Ham have reached an agreement with Manchester City to sign Kalvin Phillips on loan.

Phillips has made just 31 appearances for City since a £45m transfer from Leeds in July 2022 and Pep Guardiola admitted in December he cannot envisage the England midfielder in his team.

The 28-year-old now looks set to leave the Etihad on a temporary basis although there is an option to join the Hammers permanently.

Phillips was flying back on Tuesday from Manchester City's warm-weather training camp in Abu Dhabi with the rest of the squad and a medical is expected to take place this week.

Crystal Palace and Newcastle also made contact with City about a deal this month, while Atletico Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus were also understood to be interested.

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Image: Kalvin Phillips' career stats in the Premier League for Man City

Phillips has not managed a single start in the Premier League this season having started just twice last term.

Guardiola revealed before the window that he cannot find a place in his side for the 28-year-old, who has made four league appearances this season, saying: "I visualise the team and I struggle to see him."

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Why Phillips still has plenty to offer

Sky Sports features writer Nick Wright:

"Kalvin Phillips was billed as a Fernandinho replacement with the attributes to slot into Manchester City's midfield. Instead, his signing will go down as a rare recruitment error by the champions.

"Phillips was mostly a spectator as Pep Guardiola's side powered to the treble last season. The new campaign has brought more of the same. In total, he has made six starts in 18 months, playing only seven per cent of available Premier League minutes.

Kalvin Phillips warms up before kick-off

"Such a prolonged period out of favour would normally be a red flag to any suitors. But the circumstances are unique at the Etihad Stadium. Guardiola's demands are as high as they come - particularly in the No 6 position, where he can already call on Rodri.

"City remain dependent on the Spaniard. This season, they have lost all three of the Premier League games he has missed, their struggles without him showing why, when he is available, he invariably starts.

"Phillips was determined to change Guardiola's mind, insisting on staying last summer and fighting for his place. But it was telling that, even when Rodri was unavailable in the first half of the campaign, Phillips was overlooked. The writing was on the wall."

Read more about why Phillips could shine again in different surroundings

Neville: It's a good move for Phillips

Gary Neville speaking on The Gary Neville Podcast:

"I think it's a good fit. I can see why David Moyes would want Kalvin Phillips - that reliability in midfield. They lost Declan Rice last summer so it'll improve West Ham and it's a good move for West Ham.

"It's a good move for Kalvin Phillips because he needs to be guaranteed to play. Gareth Southgate likes him and trusts him, and he wants him playing so he can get him back in the team. It's not a position England are blessed with lots of options.

"When City sign somebody it doesn't always work straightaway and what ordinarily happens is that Pep Guardiola within 18 months to two years makes it work. (Riyad) Mahrez, Rodri had slow starts but when you look at Phillips, and let's say he took the place of Rodri, and he's in there alongside Bernardo Silva and Kevin De Bruyne, you've got to be an exceptional player to play in that team.

"There's this theory that goes around that an average player can play in a great team because they will be carried by the rest of the players - that isn't the case. You'd stand out a million miles if you couldn't cope with the ability and the quick speed of the player. That's what's happened to Phillips a little bit at City - it's all a little bit too quick for him. You've got to have eyes in the back of your head, receive it on the half-turn and be absolutely brilliant technically.

"Pep asks so much of his central midfield players and it's just not quite worked out, but that's fine. We know he's a really good pro, a really good player and I think it's a good move for West Ham and for Phillips. The most important thing is he gets four to five months of football for England and for himself; just purely to get his career back on track.

"I think he will be in the frame [to start at the Euros], if he can continue to stay fit and plays for West Ham."

Follow the January transfer window

The winter transfer window is open and will close at 11pm in England and midnight in Scotland on Thursday 1 February.

To ensure harmonisation with the major leagues in Europe, the closing dates were set following discussions with the EFL, DFL, Serie A, LaLiga, and LFP, who will all close their summer and winter windows on 1 September and 1 February respectively.

Keep up to date with all the latest transfer news and rumours in our dedicated Transfer Centre blog on Sky Sports' digital platforms, while you can also catch up with the ins, outs and analysis on Sky Sports News, including daily transfer shows, and listen to our Transfer Talk podcast.

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