Kalvin Phillips reveals he’s been ‘a little bit down’ over his lack of gametime for England at the World Cup… as he admits it will be tough to dislodge ‘absolutely unbelievable’ Jude Bellingham in Gareth Southgate’s starting XI
Kalvin Phillips has admitted his frustration at his lack of involvement in England‘s World Cup campaign in Qatar so far and said it will be difficult to dislodge Jude Bellingham in the midfield pecking order.
Phillips looks set to be on the bench again when England take on Wales in their final Group B game on Tuesday, with Bellingham likely to start for the third consecutive match at the tournament.
The 26-year-old Manchester City midfielder, an unused substitute in England’s opening two group matches, heaped praise on Bellingham and described the 19-year-old star as ‘absolutely unbelievable’.
Kalvin Phillips has said he was a ‘little bit down’ at his lack of minutes for England in Qatar
Phillips said Jude Bellingham had been ‘absolutely unbelievable’ in his short England career
‘When you’ve got a player in front of you like Jude, it’s very hard to try and show to the manager that you’re capable of doing his job because he’s been absolutely unbelievable,’ Phillips told BBC Sport.
‘The other day, I was a little bit down, about not being involved and not getting many minutes under my belt but I know that is part of football and part of the tournament.
‘It happens and eventually you are going to be needed so I’ll just make sure that I stay ready and stay happy as well.’
Phillips had played just 14 minutes of competitive football for his new side before being named in Gareth Southgate’s 26-man squad for the World Cup.
Phillips spoke to the BBC ahead of England’s final group game against Wales on Tuesday
The Manchester City midfielder said he would be ready if called upon by Gareth Southgate
The former Leeds man then narrowly avoided a freak injury when he dropped a weight on his foot two days after being picked in Southgate’s travelling party.
He has not yet featured for England in Qatar as Southgate opted for a holding midfield partnership of Bellingham and Declan Rice in the win over Iran and the drab draw with the USA.
Borussia Dortmund star Bellingham is expected to play further forward for the Three Lions against Wales, with Jordan Henderson partnering Rice.
Phil Foden and Marcus Rashford are in line to start the Wales clash, dubbed the Battle of Britain.
As reported by Sportsmail last night, Kyle Walker and Jordan Henderson are also set to play as Southgate prepares to stick with a back-four for the clash.
England’s possible XI to play Wales: Southgate is expected to make four changes in total