England midfielder Kalvin Phillips vows not to lose discipline at Euro 2020 after nearly missing the tournament following an incident in Leeds’ clash with West Brom
Leeds midfielder Kalvin Phillips has promised not to lose his head after a reckless tackle on the final day of the season nearly knocked him out of Euro 2020.
Phillips suffered a serious-looking shoulder injury after falling out of frustration at West Brom’s Grady Diangana and although the 25-year-old recovered to be named in Gareth Southgate’s squad, it was a reminder that he needed to stay focused.
“It was my mistake that led to their goal and you could see my mood changing,” he admitted. “I was annoyed with myself and that’s what got me injured.
Leeds midfielder Kalvin Phillips has pledged to maintain his discipline for England at Euro 2020
“My first emotion was that I was afraid that I would not make the English selection. It’s a learning curve. There are things I need to work on in my game and I will continue to do so.”
Phillips was one of the stars of Marcelo Bielsa’s side, who finished ninth in the Premier League after promotion.
He could also play an important role for England this summer, as Jordan Henderson’s last game comes back in February due to a groin injury.
Phillips was aware he could miss the tournament after jumping on Grady Diangana
Phillips, also known as ‘the Yorkshire Pirlo’, could win his eighth cap against Romania in the final audition on Sunday before England head into the final against Croatia next weekend. He said the pressure doesn’t affect him.
“I’m more excited than anything,” he said. “I’m relaxed off the field and try not to let anything get to me. The way Marcelo has coached me is to never get overhyped about how I played and always make improvements.”
Bielsa has given Phillips a shirt from his former club Newell’s Old Boys for the midfielder to frame and hang in the playroom of his new home.
It’s rapid progress for the player who has been putting up flags around his home for the past few World Cups and watching England matches in his living room with friends. Working with internationals in training has taken its own game to the next level.
The 25-year-old discussed how being part of the international set-up has made him his game
“The standard and how the players apply themselves is top notch,” he said. “I was impressed with how good and fast some of the players were when I first came in. Now I try to keep up with them. You want to compete to be as good as them.”
When someone suggested he was better than N’Golo Kante, Phillips jokingly replied, “Unfortunately, I have to disagree with that.”
But having been an uncapped Championship player 12 months ago, the fact that Phillips was able to take on the world’s best defensive midfielder in the knockout stage of the European Championship shows the sharp slope in his career.