Kalvin Phillips admits he has ‘not done as much’ as he would’ve liked in his debut season with Manchester City, but the midfielder insists he will give everything to make his mark at the club.
Phillips joined City last summer, signing a six-year contract after leaving boyhood club Leeds United in a deal worth £42million. The 27-year-old was brought in to compete with Rodri for the defensive midfield spot, with Fernandinho returning to Athletico Paranaense in Brazil following his release.
However, things have not gone to plan for Phillips, who had not started in the Premier League until last weekend’s 1-0 win over Chelsea – a game that effectively meant nothing, with the title confirmed and Pep Guardiola making wholesale changes. The England international has been unable to displace the ever-present Rodri and has struggled with City’s complex tactics.
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“I came here to win trophies and play football,” Phillips told BBC Radio Manchester. “I’ve not done as much as I’d like to this season. Next pre-season I’ll try and come back as fit as possible and hopefully I can be similar to the likes of Rodri and [Ilkay] Gundogan who are very important to the team and undroppable.
“Not being big-headed but I was one of the standout players [at Leeds] and the first couple of training sessions [with City] I was like ‘what am I doing here?’. I’ve adapted, longer time than normal because of my injuries. To learn off them every single day. Still we’ve got young players who are right up my backside. I’m looking forward to spending a good five more years here.”
Phillips enjoyed the title celebrations last weekend nonetheless, picking up his winner’s medal and lifting the trophy at the Etihad. It is a first major honour for the midfielder, whose only other trophy came in the Championship with Leeds.
“We got there in the end,” he added. “With the celebrations that we’ve had they’ll be in my memory for my full life. Hopefully we do it next year and the year after that. It’s something I’m pushing myself to do.
“As the season comes to a close, now we’re just focusing on the next trophy. I think everyone here wants the Champions League. It’s the one the lads are talking about the most.”