Kalvin Phillips has the edge over Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson.
That’s according to former Leeds ace Noel Whelan, who reckons the classy midfielder is easily Premier League standard.
Phillips is already firmly established as an Elland Road favourite after racking up nearly 200 appearances for the club.
He was linked with a big-money summer move to Aston Villa but opted to stay in Yorkshire.
With Leeds’ promotion charge back on track, he could be playing Premier League football next season anyway.
Nevertheless, Whelan says the 24-year-old already has the edge over two current England internationals.
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“Kalvin Phillips is one of those players who is not just integral in the role that he plays but also the confidence he gives to others when he is in the side,” he told Football Insider .
“There has to be an England call up for him very soon the way he is playing.
“He is a leader. There is no better defensive midfield player in the Championship in that position and I would probably say the Premier League as well. I do not think Declan Rice and Jordan Henderson are in the same league as Kalvin Phillips.
“I really do not. Kalvin is way above them.”
Reports this weekend suggested Wolves, Burnley and Sheffield United are all ready to pounce if Leeds don’t get promoted.
After a poor run of results last month, Marcelo Bielsa’s side now look to have turned a corner.
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They managed a 1-0 triumph over Reading at Elland Road on Saturday – but Phillips limped off in the first half with a calf complaint.
"It was a similar match to what we are used to playing,” Bielsa said in the aftermath.
“Generally we create more chances than the opponent, we have more possession than the opponent and today was this situation.
"There was a situation in the last minute for them, the number six became a striker and that created confusion that maybe we could have solved from the bench.
"This player had a clear chance and it was a very important save by Kiko Casilla.
“For some time we were better than the opponent and the save had a big impact."
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