Pep Guardiola welcomes Kalvin Phillips back to the team and says the player ‘wants to move’
Pep Guardiola welcomes Kalvin Phillips back to Manchester City squad as he says the player ‘wants to make a move’ after weight debacle… but warns footballers need to be ‘PERFECT’ all the time
Kalvin Phillips appears to be back in Pep Guardiola’s good books and could play Chelsea in the FA Cup on Sunday but received another warning about the professionalism expected at Manchester City following his £45million move in the summer .
Phillips had a break after the World Cup but returned to City “overweight and in no condition to train and play”, according to Guardiola.
Phillips came on as a substitute in Thursday’s 1-0 win over Chelsea and Guardiola says the midfielder has heeded comments about his fitness and will face Southampton in the Carabao Cup next week.
Kalvin Phillips has been brought back into the fold by Pep Guardiola with a string of substitutes and could feature in Sunday’s FA Cup third round against Chelsea
“He wants to change,” said Guardiola. “That might be a good lesson for him in the future. A footballer has to be perfect for 12 months – perfect. Even on vacation it has to be perfect.
“You can enjoy, you can do whatever you want, but you have to be ready because this level is so demanding. You have to play three games [a week]you have to be fit
“If you’re not fit, then nothing. But, I said, in the last few weeks, days, he’s improved his level.
‘I do not know [if he starts] But sure, he will play the Carabao Cup. I felt like he was back last week, you know. I had a good feeling.”
Inevitably, Phillips was met with chants from Chelsea fans that he was a “fat ass” when he came on as a substitute, but Guardiola dismissed the repercussions of that. “He has a sense of humor,” said the city manager. “It was fun for the Chelsea fans.”
The midfielder was left out against Liverpool in December for returning overweight from the World Cup
Phillips had a difficult start to his City career, having initially failed to make the first-team before suffering a shoulder injury that ruled him out for two months.
He returned just in time to make Gareth Southgate’s World Cup squad but made us two substitutes for England in Qatar.
Guardiola insisted he still has confidence in his summer signing and that Phillips will adjust to the level City require over time.
Guardiola said: “Listen, Kalvin was injured at Leeds for a long part of the season last season. That’s the truth. He came and couldn’t train afterwards, fought, had the operation on his shoulder.
“So every time the training was over. He fought to get to the World Cup, he made it, but that was a long time he didn’t play. In competition you need rhythm and concepts [of our play].
“But it wasn’t there [for him] in the past for five or six years. But as soon as possible, we need it. Rodri can’t play every minute. We need Kalvin as we need all players. We’ll try to fix it.’
Phillips had a difficult start in life at Manchester City following his move from Leeds
Meanwhile, Guardiola has hailed John Stones, man of the match against Chelsea and one of England’s heroes in Qatar. “He played an incredible World Cup,” said Guardiola.
“He was maybe my first or second signing when I arrived seven years ago. I know him pretty well. I know when he’s stable at home, here [in his head]happy what a player!
“He’s had some ups and downs in the past, he’s had some injuries in the past but I’d say that’s part of the process of realizing what he needs – he’s still young – to be consistent.”
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-11611289/Pep-Guardiola-welcomes-Kalvin-Phillips-fold-declaring-player-wants-change.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Pep Guardiola welcomes Kalvin Phillips back to the team and says the player ‘wants to move’