Noel Whelan has insisted Leeds United can prevent Kalvin Phillips from quitting for a Premier League club by offering him an improved contract and recruiting top new teammates this summer.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, ex-United striker Whelan explained he had been informed by Phillips’ camp that the midfielder is eager to sign a new deal despite strong interest from top-flight trio Wolves, Bournemouth and Aston Villa.
It has been reported that Villa are prepared to pay £14million for the 23-year-old, while Leeds’ valuation of their academy product is at around the £20million mark.
Whelan has urged Leeds supporters not to get too flustered by media reports about major offers being submitted and instead focus on the player’s genuine commitment to his boyhood club.
“It’s still very early doors in the transfer window and Phillips’ contract negotiations,” Whelan told Football Insider. “There’s going to be interest in Kalvin, because he’s a specialist midfield anchorman who is developing into a top player, after last season.
“I know Wolves, Bournemouth and Villa are interested, and I also know Kalvin wants to stay at Leeds.”
As revealed by Football Insider, Leeds have made an early move to keep Phillips by promising him he will be offered an improved contract when he returns from holiday.
“Can Leeds offer him something to keep him at the club?” Whelan asked. “Kalvin will want a better contract and a better quality of playing joining this summer.
“Leeds need to show him they are ambitious and well placed to get promotion.”
Leeds fans are concerned that the board cashed in on another academy product Ronaldo Vieira last summer, and also sold Chris Wood and Charlie Taylor the previous year.
Phillips has a contract with United that runs until the summer of 2021.
In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that the club have been handed a major boost in bid to sign 21-year-old top of Bielsa’s transfer list.