Patrick Vieira slams Kalvin Phillips performance at EUROs
ITV pundit Patrick Vieira wasn’t particularly impressed with the performances of Leeds United ace Kalvin Phillips and West Ham’s Declan Rice for England on Friday.
The Three Lions were held to a boring and tame 0-0 draw against rivals Scotland at Wembley on Friday evening.
What was billed as a promising encounter against two age-old rivals, failed to live up to its expectations.
A number of players were slammed, but Phillips and Rice were singled out for being extremely static in the middle of the park – suggesting they weren’t ambitious enough to play the forward passes.
Speaking to ITV Sport, Vieira singled out the midfield duo. He said, “I think when you look at England, they’re in a good place but if you ask ‘why don’t they create good chances’, I believe the holding midfielders, Rice and Phillips, are both ball-winners, it’s not their strength to be good with the ball.
“I think there’s a lack of creativity, a lack of seeing the game really quick and trying to find players between the lines. Too many passes backwards and safe passes sideways.
“They didn’t take enough risks.”
Where’s he coming from?
He could make that argument about Rice, but if he watched the game or the one before that, he can’t actually believe Phillips is static.
For the game against Scotland, Phillips played in a three and not a two as Mount played on the left of the midfield.
The Leeds man was often on the right pinging in long balls hoping someone gets their head on it or creates a telling chance in the final third.
Per SofaScore stats, he completed the most long passes of an English player on the field (5) and only Kieran Tierney (6) completed more than him in the game.
In the game against Croatia, Phillips played in a more advanced midfield role, as a free eight – which resulted in him providing an assist for the only goal of the game.
He also enjoyed a pass accuracy of 94 percent – misplacing just two passes all game and also recovered the ball seven times and won four duels.
Yes, we agree that England were a grade below, but to pin it on Phillips is beyond ridiculous.
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