Kalvin Phillips attended the pre-match presser today and was adamant that the run we are on is being “over-exaggerated”. I will talk less about that comment and more about the other one that stood out, Christiansen telling Phillips to slim down in the summer ahead of a new season.
Kalvin Phillips is a player that I change my mind on throughout a season. He can go through spells, as we have seen this season where he can look like a very accomplished and effective player at this level. He can then go through longer spells where he looks out of his depth and not really on the ball, again we have seen this already this season. My main issue with Phillips is consistency because I do feel that he has much more to give within him and it isn’t a case of the ability not being there, it’s more a case of how and if we can get that out of him. His comment today about the run being over-exaggerated wound me up. The fact the players are saying that this is the case shows our issues, how can they not see that eight losses from nine cannot be justified. Anyway, he’s said it and Christiansen basically said he wasn’t under pressure so it was a presser that hasn’t gone down great.
Phillips also said that Christiansen told him to slim down during the summer and that meant he had to cut down on chocolate cake after Sunday dinner. Phillips is a solid lad and on occasions he can really impose himself on the game, away at Sunderland and Nottingham Forest he bossed the middle of the pitch physically and it helped us turn those sides over comfortably. In recent weeks he has been a passenger and there is the problem. Ronaldo Vieira has come back into the fold but that has allowed Phillips to drop off his game far too easily. Phillips claim that the run is over-exaggerated doesn’t give off a good impression about his ambition and that has come into question on social media, not just him but the entire squad if that is the feeling amongst the players. Phillips, like others need to lift their game in the coming weeks, because the issues raised about the run are fully justified and the only thing that will stop it is wins.