Kalvin Phillips’ loan move from Manchester City to West Ham is a win-win scenario for all involved, according to Gary Neville.
The defensive midfielder is set to move to the London Stadium with his medical booked in on Wednesday, while the Irons will also have the option to buy the 28-year-old permanently at the end of the season.
There was much interest in the England star from home and abroad, with West Ham beating the likes of Juventus, Barcelona and Crystal Palace to his signature, while Manchester United were even tentatively linked at one stage.
Neville is certain that east London is the right location for Phillips who is highly-rated but has struggled for game time at City – just 911 minutes in 18 months to be precise.
‘He needs to play football, that’s for sure. He was a major England player, someone who I think we thought would do well at Manchester City,’ the United legend told Sky Sports.
‘You normally think that City don’t make mistakes in the transfer market. Just not worked out for him there – they’ve got fantastic options in midfield.
‘But West Ham losing Declan Rice, I think it’s a good move for West Ham, it’s a good move for Kalvin Phillips. Hopefully he can stay fit and get a lot of football in before the Euros in the summer.
‘I think that’ll be the main thing, getting football before the Euros. It’s important obviously for England, it’s important for Kalvin Phillips.
‘Gareth Southgate, trusts certain players a lot and I think that England haven’t got unbelievable options in the centre of midfield. They haven’t. So I think this could work well for all parties, including obviously our country.’
West Ham have done well this season despite losing star player and captain Rice to Arsenal, with the signings made from his £100million sale helping the club to sixth in the table and the Europa League knockouts.
Phillips would likely play in the same position as Rice did, though he faces strong competition from Edson Alvarez, one of last summer’s signings who has impressed so far.
‘We know he’ll play in midfield, alongside [Tomas] Soucek, he’ll play in that two. He’ll allow Soucek to go forward – and he sits in there, he’s a good passer, good experience,’ Neville added.
‘Manchester City is a football team that is unique and if you’re just not quite as sharp on the ball as those around you – and he’s playing with Rodri, with Bernardo Silva, with Kevin De Bruyne – you can look a little bit like a fish out of water.
‘There was a little bit of that of Kalvin Phillips at Manchester City, but when he goes to West Ham, he’ll fit in there no problem. He’s a really good player and a good, solid, David Moyes-type of thing to have on the pitch.’
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