Liverpool defender Nat Phillips is a player who will be ‘interesting a lot of clubs’ in the Premier League amid increased speculation that Aston Villa could make a move, according to journalist Sami Mokbel.
Phillips has been heavily linked with an Anfield exit in recent weeks after struggling for game time this season, and he could be set for a late switch in the January transfer window.
What is the latest news involving Phillips?
The 24-year-old rose to prominence last season after making 20 appearances in all competitions for the Reds following an injury crisis at the heart of defence, leading to Jurgen Klopp labelling him a ‘monster’.
However, the arrival of Ibrahima Konate over the summer coupled with the return to full fitness of Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez has seen Phillips slump down the Liverpool pecking order.
As a result, Phillips has been limited to just 224 minutes of action this term and two starts this term, meaning he could seek pastures new this winter.
According to James Pearce of The Athletic, Liverpool have already rejected an offer of £7 million from an unnamed top-flight club for the 6 foot 3 centre-back, with sporting director Michael Edwards holding out for £15m.
The report lists Villa, Newcastle United, Watford and West Ham United as potential suitors for Phillips, whose outstanding display against AC Milan in the Champions League back in December is believed to have also sparked interest from Italy.
What has Mokbel said about Phillips?
Fellow Liverpool defender Gomez has also been linked with making the move to Villa Park, but Mokbel believes Phillips is a player who could be on Steven Gerrard’s radar as well.
In an exclusive interview, he told GiveMeSport: “Potentially, yeah (he could be an option for Aston Villa). Nat Phillips is a player that I think will be interesting a lot of clubs in the mid to low area of the Premier League.
“He, in difficult circumstances last season, was thrust into the limelight at Liverpool after their central defensive injury crisis, and he did perfectly well. And I think he proved that he can hack it at this level.”
Do Villa need a new centre-back?
The departure of former loanee Axel Tuanzebe has left Gerrard relatively lightweight at centre-back, and the former England legend admitted he would like some extra cover and competition in that are of the pitch.
“I like to have four centre-backs and we only have three, so we are analysing that situation,” said the 41-year-old tactician in a recent interview.
Kortney Hause ended speculation over his future by putting pen to paper on a new contract, but Gerrard evidently wants an additional option to Tyrone Mings, Ezri Konsa and Hause, and Phillips could be the ideal candidate.