Burnley are understood to be interested in bringing Liverpool defender Nat Phillips to Turf Moor in a permanent deal this summer.
Sean Dyche and co were obviously impressed with what they saw from Phillips in the second half of last season for The Reds. Phillips could be well suited to a side like Burnley with his obvious strength in the air and no-nonsense approach to defending.
As reported in The Telegraph, Burnley have apparently made an approach for Phillips already. The article states:
‘Liverpool have received an approach from Burnley for defender Nat Phillips.
The Merseyside club are willing to listen to offers for an initial £10 million, with further add-ons to be negotiated to take the full asking price towards £15m.
The 24-year-old Phillips is an attractive option given his personal terms are currently well below usual Premier League levels, and he has absorbed invaluable experience at the highest level of English and European football in the last 12 months.
Phillips, who stepped in to solve Jurgen Klopp’s defensive injury crisis last season, enhanced his reputation during a particularly impressive finale to the campaign when he helped the club to Champions League qualification.’
Phillips put in a particularly impressive performance against Burnley late in the campaign, helping Liverpool to a clean sheet while also scoring a headed goal at the other end. As if that wasn’t enough, Phillips cleared one off the line in the same game for The Reds.
The report acknowledges this as well as highlighting the fact that Burnley are not the only Premier League team interested in signing Phillips.
‘His performance against Burnley at Turf Moor, in which he was superb at both ends and scored in a 3-0 win, will have been especially noted by Sean Dyche.
Burnley are not the only Premier League suitors, and Liverpool are prepared to negotiate a mutually beneficial deal which will allow Phillips to build on his breakthrough season.
Despite becoming a cult hero for the Kop, there is realism about his first-team opportunities in a normal season when Virgil Van Dijk, Joe Gomez, Joel Matip and new signing Ibrahima Konate are vying for the centre-back positions. Making the switch before the start of pre-season training in July makes sense for all parties if the fee can be agreed.’
Now 24, Phillips will know he needs to be playing football on a regular basis. While he stepped up for Liverpool when they needed him most in recent months due to the injury crisis, it’s almost universally agreed that the centre-half’s best chance of first-team football is away from Anfield.
Watch this space.
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