Tottenham: £60m target would be 'a Hojbjerg upgrade' at Hotspur Way

Antonio Conte taking charge of a Premier League game for Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur could secure ‘an upgrade’ on midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg by signing Kalvin Phillips, according to Daily Star journalist Paul Brown.

The Leeds United midfielder has been linked with a move away from Elland Road in recent months after some standout displays for both club and country.

What is the latest news involving Phillips?

According to The Times, Aston Villa are the ‘frontrunners’ for Phillips’ signature and are prepared to splash out a club-record £60 million to prise him away from his boyhood club.

It’s claimed that the Midlands outfit are also prepared to pay a salary of £10m in order to fend off the competition for the 26-year-old’s signature from West Ham and Newcastle United.

However, The Mirror state that Premier League giants Liverpool and Manchester United have also ‘shown interest’ in Phillips as they step up their search for engine room reinforcements.

And The Telegraph have also disclosed how Tottenham manager Antonio Conte is ‘a fan’ of the England international as the race for his services hots up.

Phillips, who has been described as “unique” and has just over two years left to run on his £38,000-per-week contract, hasn’t ruled out the possibility of putting pen to paper on fresh terms, though.

What has Brown said about Phillips?

Brown believes that despite the intense speculation surrounding Phillips’ future, it will be a ‘straight choice’ between Liverpool and the Red Devils if he exits Leeds.

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He told GiveMeSport: “Kalvin Phillips would undoubtedly be an upgrade on Hojbjerg, I think. I just think Phillips is set for either Liverpool or Manchester United.

“I think he’s going to go to one of those two clubs; it seems like they’ve done the groundwork there and that if he leaves Leeds, it’s going to be a straight choice between those two.”

Would Phillips be an upgrade on Hojbjerg?

If Phillips did make the surprise switch to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, though, it’s possible that he could replace Hojbjerg in the middle of the park, who has also reportedly attracted admiring glances from Newcastle.

And the underlying numbers of both players indicate that the Leeds ace could be a better option than his Danish counterpart for Spurs.

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As per FBref, Phillips has won 2.63 tackles, made 9.27 successful pressures, 2.48 blocks and 2.12 interceptions per 90 this season, bettering Hojbjerg’s tallies of 1.49, 5.27, two and two, respectively.

Conte could attempt to beat the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United to Phillips’ signature then, but that will be no easy task.  

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