Kevin Phillips has claimed that the return of Kalvin Phillips is a “timely boost” for Leeds United as they look to reignite their faltering promotion campaign.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Sunderland and England striker suggested that the 24-year-old could have a “massive” role to play in helping to turn the Whites around.

Phillips returning to the starting XI for last night’s 1-1 draw at Brentford after being absent for three matches with a red card collected in the 1-0 defeat to QPR last month.

Phillips has been quick to emphasise just how important his namesake can be.

“It’s always a blow when you lose arguably one of the best midfielders in the country in that position,” he told Football Insider.

“He’s a leader, and it is that timely boost that Leeds need. Having an influential player like that back in the team will be massive help.

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“He’s a great player, one of the best in the Championship, and Bielsa will be delighted to have him back.”

Prior to his suspension, Phillips had featured in all but one of United’s Championship matches, missing the 2-0 win over Huddersfield Town in December due to an accumulation of yellow cards.

So far this season he has registered one goal and two assists but his impact can not be judged in his goal contributions.

Phillips makes Leeds tick by protecting the back four and launching attacks with his wide and accurate range of passing.

In other Leeds United, Exclusive: Danny Mills reacts as four Whites transfer targets named by chief.