By Joe Ellis

1st Jul, 2022 | 1:40pm

Leeds United exit for Kalvin Phillips devastates talkSPORT pundit

Leeds United academy graduate Kalvin Phillips is getting ever closer to leaving the football club this summer with Manchester City his next destination.

The England international is set to undergo his medical at the Etihad Stadium on Friday [Daily Mail,1 July, page 74] as he nears the completion of a £45million move across the Pennines.

Moving in the opposite direction, Darko Gyabi is also set to be medially tested on 1 July as he nears a £5million move to Elland Road [Yorkshire Evening Post].

Ex-Whites striker Jermaine Beckford admitted on talkSPORT of his devastation to see Phillips leave the club but even he had to admit that the move made sense from the player’s perspective.

“I think it’s a great move,” Beckford said. “I’m devastated, obviously, from a Leeds perspective that he has gone but I completely understand it.

“It’s a massive move and fantastic opportunity for him to challenge for titles on all fronts and play Champions League football in a World Cup year for the reigning champions.

“He had his eyes and mind set on Manchester City because it is something very familiar to what he knows and is used to and that’s the great move that he’s made.”

Era defining

Ever since Marcelo Bielsa took charge of Leeds United, Phillips has been the one player that has embodied everything this football club is all about both on and off the pitch.

His love for the club is obvious and if we were challenging for trophies on a regular basis, he probably wouldn’t have been swayed by Pep Guardiola’s reigning champions.

When we look back at the past four or five years in our history in 20 years’ time, we will not only remember Bielsa as our manager but the player who will immediately come to mind is Phillips.

Injuries really didn’t help him during what turned out to be his final year at Elland Road but there is still a lot of love from Leeds fans for the 26-year-old, even if we don’t want to show it when City come to Yorkshire next season.

Jesse Marsch now has a big task on his hands to find a suitable replacement for the England international with his newly-replenished bank balance to play with.

In other Leeds United news, we could be about to receive a last-gasp £60million offer for Raphinha which could hijack Chelsea’s advances.