By MOT Leeds News speaking to Paul Robinson

16th Jun, 2021 | 7:10am

Paul Robinson hails transformation of Leeds United ace Kalvin Phillips

We’re delighted to welcome former England goalkeeper Paul Robinson as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Leeds United…

Paul Robinson claims Leeds United ace Kalvin Phillips has spent the last six months transforming into an all-round midfield player.

While the 25-year-old has shone in a deep-lying midfield role at Elland Road in the Premier League, Gareth Southgate managed to get him to star in a more attacking sense for England on Sunday.

Phillips was easily England’s best player as they opened their Euro 2020 campaign with a 1-0 win against Croatia at Wembley.

He assisted Raheem Sterling’s winner while also having a major impact both in possession and out of it.

Ex-Leeds goalkeeper Robinson says Whites supporters all knew what Phillips was capable of already but now it seems the whole of the country does too.

“He took it all in his stride,” Robinson told MOT Leeds News. “He’s a very unassuming character and from what Gareth Southgate said, you can take a lot from that. High output, low maintenance – that sums him up very well.

Everyone knows he’s a defensive midfield maestro at Leeds and they struggle when he doesn’t play. He protects the back-four, he mops up, he makes the occasional charge forward but I thought in the England team, we saw his defensive side as well.

Before Bielsa came in, he was an attacking midfield player so it seems that in the last very quickly – in the last six months – he’s becoming an all-round midfield player.

I thought Sunday was his emergence, if you like. Not just for Leeds fans, who know exactly what he’s all about, that was the time the whole nation stood up and went, ‘wow, he’s a proper player’.”

Phillips was in stunning form for England against Croatia.

The 2018 World Cup runners-up really struggled to get a foothold in the midfield due to the Leeds star’s performance while he also threatened in the attack.

Phillips’ pass into Sterling for England’s winner was tremendous and we hope he can continue to impress as the tournament progresses.

Up next for Phillips will be a match against Scotland, who feature his Elland Road teammate and captain Liam Cooper in their defence.

In other Leeds United news, Ashley Cole slammed this Elland Road star after what he noticed him do in a Euro 2020 match.