By Richard Parks
Leeds United fans have taken to Twitter to call for manager Paul Heckingbottom to axe Kalvin Phillips for Saturday’s Championship clash at Reading.
The central midfielder has been a mainstay of United’s team this season, starting 30 of their 36 league fixtures and regularly earning favour ahead of Ronaldo Vieira, Eunan O’Kane and Vurnon Anita.
But United supporters on social media have had enough of what they are claiming is the mediocrity of the 22-year-old, who has risen through the ranks of the club to establish himself in the first team.
Phillips has made 87 appearances in total for Leeds, but a section of the fanbase believe he now must be dropped from the starting XI, beginning with Saturday’s trip to Reading.
Here is a selection of their messages on Twitter:
— Matt (@MWJS82) March 7, 2018
I really don’t want to watch Phillips start every week for another season. Never seen a centremid so scared of the ball, he constantly takes up positions that mean he’s never available for a pass. Complete passenger #lufc
— Brando Cerati (@elbrando14) March 7, 2018
Kelvin Phillips heading in the same direction as Alex Mowatt, great first season but then unable to push on from that, much better engine on him but now badly lacking the hard tackling that forced Bridcutt out of the starting 11 PH should bring in Ideguchi from his loan #lufc
— Wayne Monaghan (@White_never_red) March 8, 2018
I’m sad to say after all my hard work of defending him it’s time I agree that Kalvin Phillips is not very good #LUFC
— Sam Bird (@SamBirdyy) March 8, 2018
Phillips I’m afraid is going to go down the same path as Mowett.
Doesn’t really bring anything to the team.
Last night constantly caught in possession and at times running around in circles and lost! #lufc
— LEEDS UTD MEMORIES (@LUFCHistory) March 8, 2018
Agreed for long time. Ekuban’s another who’ll never make it. Phillips is no longer a young prospect (he needed loaning out a year ago, is it too late for him?!). Cooper’s over-rated (& lovely guy but no leader!). And other repeat gripes/observations. But we’re stuck with em…
— LUSC Griffin (@LUSCgriffinLUFC) March 8, 2018
— Ryan (@LeedsUtdRyan) March 8, 2018
Kalvin Phillips is like Mowatt, everyone wants him to do well. He’s local lad that clearly loves the club but he’s just not good enough. Too slow, doesn’t effect the game & just bullied. Like Mowatt, league one level #lufc
— Kirsty Stanley (@stanners_1982) March 8, 2018
#lufc thing is. I don’t think we have a bad team, just a weak spine, down the middle of the pitch we are too lazy, Phillips, (occasionally cooper), Ronaldo is too weak at passing lately and lassogga up top on his own makes it seem like every match we play were atleast 2 men down
— scottmjones (@thescottmjones) March 9, 2018
United have dropped to 13th in the Championship and a wretched run of one win in 13 matches has left their play-off hopes in tatters.
Reading, who reached the play-off final last season only to be defeated on penalties, are 18th in the division and fighting to avoid relegation to League One.
In other Leeds United news, it can be revealed that the club have launched a bid to sign a Premier League centre-forward in the form of his life.