Jesse Marsch believes Kalvin Phillips could find his form
Phillips' place in Manchester City's squad for Wednesday's Premier League match is in jeopardy after Pep Guardiola revealed last week that he returned from World Cup duty overweight. However, Marsch believes that a return to his boyhood club following his £45 million summer transfer would inspire the 27-year-old.
Marsch said: “With his family here, he will clearly have a strong attachment to the fans. He'd have 30 family members at matches here, and you could probably multiply that by two for this match. You just had the impression that he felt he belonged here, that this was his home. When he left, that was a big part of the difficulty, and coming back, he'll revisit those emotions, and I think it'll bring the best out of him; that's the kind of person he is."
Phillips was a surprise omission from City's Carabao Cup victory over Liverpool last week, with Guardiola claiming afterwards that he was not in good enough shape to play. Phillips has only made four substitute appearances for City, who have yet to see a return on their investment, while he came off the bench twice for England in Qatar, against Wales and Senegal. But Marsch explained why Phillips, who was named England's player of the year after leading his country to victory at Euro 2020, was sorely missed by his hometown club after making the heartbreaking decision to join City in July.
Jesse Marsh had some things to say about Kalvin before tonight's match with Manchester City
The American added: “Clearly, Kalvin is a fantastic player, but he was also a really likeable, heartwarming person to have on the team. He got along with everyone here, both the older and younger players, as well as me and the academy coaches. He just had a way of making everyone feel at ease when he walked around this building. If you asked me what the most difficult part of replacing Kalvin was, I would say it was keeping the Leeds United spirit alive. What it means to be from Leeds; what the club's history means; the human element of who we are; and that we continue to be strong in that I believe we've replaced them with really good people." Kalvin is still missed. He came to one of our games against Fulham, and you could tell he was hurting from the loss. It was as if he was still here, missing being here. He misses being here, and he misses the guys. He has a lot of good friends. This club is in his blood".
Kalvin Phillips was out of condition after the World Cup
England midfielder Kalvin Phillips returned from the World Cup overweight and ineligible to play, according to Manchester City Coach Pep Guardiola. Phillips was only used as a substitute for 40 minutes in the finals after not starting for City since his offseason move from Leeds United due to a shoulder injury. City, who return to Premier League action against Leeds on Wednesday, will be without Phillips once more, much to his manager's chagrin.
Guardiola is not impressed with Kalvin Phillips' condition
Pep Guardiola said: "He's not hurt; he came in overweight." I'm not sure why. He wasn't in good enough shape to take part in training and games. That is why he is unable to play. "When he is ready, he will play because we desperately need him."
The FA and Phillips' agent, ICM Stellar Sports, both declined to comment on Guardiola's comments. City begin the season trailing Arsenal by four points, looking for their fifth league title in the last six seasons. After a World Cup break, they returned to winning ways with a thrilling 3-2 League Cup victory over Liverpool on Thursday.