Newcastle United frustrated in pursuit of Kalvin Phillips

Kalvin Phillips - Newcastle United left frustrated in pursuit of Kalvin Phillips - Getty Images/Eddie Keogh

Newcastle United have suffered an early setback in the summer recruitment drive after they were informed that England international Kalvin Phillips intends to stay at Manchester City despite a disappointing first season.

Newcastle had identified Phillips as a target several weeks ago and were led to believe he could be made available for transfer, but have been frustrated by the response from the player’s camp.

Telegraph Sport understands that Phillips does not want to give up on City and wants to challenge himself to succeed under Pep Guardiola.

Phillips has only started two Premier games since his £42 million move from Leeds United in July last year, with another two starts coming in domestic cup competitions. Of his 23 appearances, 16 have come as a substitute.

The 27-year-old, who remains an important member of Gareth Southgate’s England squad, was an unused substitute in Saturday’s FA Cup final victory over Manchester United.

Rather than leave a club that is closing in on the Treble ahead of next weekend’s Champions League final against Inter Milan, Phillips wants to fight for a bigger role next season.

It is not unusual for Guardiola to delay giving new signings a prominent role in the side and Phillips believes he can follow the lead of Jack Grealish, who also struggled to get into City’s starting XI immediately after his £100 million move from Aston Villa.

Jack Grealish (left) and Kalvin Phillips - - Getty Images/Tom Flathers
Jack Grealish (left) and Kalvin Phillips - - Getty Images/Tom Flathers

The situation could change if City decide they want to move the player on this summer and Newcastle have asked to be kept informed of developments.

It remains unclear whether Guardiola sees Phillips as a long-term solution in the centre of his midfield given how little game time he has been given this season.

Should Phillips be allowed to find a new club there is likely to be stiff competition from other Premier League clubs, but one of manager Eddie Howe’s priorities is to look for a new deep lying midfielder.

Phillips looks like someone who would fit well into Newcastle’s system, but there has been no progress made on the deal at this stage.

Newcastle are in the market for two new midfielders this summer and other targets include Nice’s Khéphren Thuram, Brighton’s Moises Caicedo and Southampton’s Roméo Lavia. Leicester City’s James Maddison is also a player of keen interest from Newcastle’s recruitment team.

One player who will not be signing for Newcastle this summer is Celta Vigo midfielder Gabri Veiga. Reports in Spain had suggested Newcastle were in advanced talks with the player but this had been denied by several sources at St James’ Park who deny the player will be heading to Tyneside.