By Gabriel Agbonlahor

20th Aug, 2021 | 11:46am

Phillips '100%' tipped to start for Leeds v Everton after update - pundit

Gabby Agbonlahor has “100 per cent” backed Kalvin Phillips to start for Leeds United against Everton.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-Aston Villa and England forward insisted the Whites have a “much better chance” of beating Everton with the England international in the side.

Phillips was an unused substitute against Manchester United as Leeds lost 5-1 at Old Trafford last weekend.

The midfielder was not deemed ready by Marcelo Bielsa after he played a key role in England’s march to the European Championship final this summer.

However, the Argentine revealed in his pre-Everton press conference yesterday (19 August) that he is now “closer to being in the team”.

Centre-back Robin Koch, 25, was utilised in the defensive midfield role at Man United and had an afternoon to forget.

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He had just 41 touches of the ball – less than any other outfield player to play 90 minutes, according to sofascore.

Even goalkeeper Illan Meslier had more touches (69).

Asked whether he expects Phillips to replace the Germany international, Agbonlahor told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley: “100 per cent.

“Everton looked good against Southampton.

“This is their first home game of the season, they’re going to want to win it. They’re going to want to get off the mark and with Phillips in the side you’ve got a much better chance of winning games.

“Bruno Fernandes would not have had the same impact last week if Phillips was playing and marking him.

“Definitely you want him back in the side because he’s a very good player.”

Phillips missed nine Premier League games last season through injury and suspension.

Leeds lost seven of their games without the 25-year-old and won twice.

In other news, a Leeds United player has finalised his exit after a deal is agreed and a medical is underway.