Kalvin Phillips Man City exit twist as European giants priced out & Premier League rivals in 'direct contact'

Kalvin Phillips looks set to leave Man City this month with minutes lacking under Pep Guardiola.

West Ham United are thought to be progressing in their approach for Kalvin Phillips with reports suggesting they are in 'direct contact' for the Manchester City midfielder.

West Ham emerged as frontrunners late last week, following reports that Newcastle had pulled out of a deal due to City's financial demands. Those in charge at the Etihad are thought to want a £7million loan fee plus a £40m obligation to buy, which would represent a slight profit on the £42m they paid Leeds for him in 2022.

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European interest had also surfaced, with Spanish pair Atletico Madrid and Barcelona joining long-time admirers Juventus in the race. But there remains a huge chasm in the financial strength of those clubs compared to those in the Premier League and Fabrizio Romano has reported that Barcelona are not working on a deal as it stands.

City's demands are again thought to be too expensive for the La Liga side, and with Phillips not agitating to move they have no need to soften their stance. Romano adds that West Ham 'insist' on taking Phillips at the London Stadium and that talks will continue to progress this week.

Those talks are centred around the finances of any deal, with City wanting the aforementioned fees plus full coverage of Phillip's £135,000-per-week wages. David Moyes' side are in need of midfield reinforcements. with £35.4m summer signing Edson Alvarez currently out with a calf injury.

The Hammers have been notably weaker in central midfield without Alvarez and would benefit from more depth in that area, particularly given their progression from the Europa League group stages means they will have European knockout football to contend with. Regular game time will be a key factor for Phillips, who his yet to start a Premier League game this season. Even with regular starter Rodri suspended, manager Pep Guardiola worked around the former Leeds man and publicly apologised to him for a lack of football in December.

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Phillips has so far kept his place in the England squad during international breaks but will need far more minutes in the second-half of the season in order to secure a place for the European Championships in Germany this summer. Gareth Southgate has remained loyal to the 28-year-old but may be forced into a decision if other options are playing more regularly.

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