Kalvin Phillips opens up on how close he came to leaving Leeds

Kalvin Phillips admits he thought he might have to leave Leeds last summer for the sake of his England hopes.

Phillips was targeted by a number of Premier League clubs when Leeds failed to win promotion and Aston Villa offered £25million for the midfielder.

The academy graduate is Leeds born and bred and did not want to leave, but admits he did feel he might have to quit the club he loves.

“A lot of people talk about the money in the sport and it is life changing,” he said in an interview in the second series of the Amazon documentary Take Us Home.

“There was speculation about me possibly playing for England and there was a lot of talk that I wouldn’t be able to play for England if I was still in the Championship.

“So that was one of the things that made me think I need to be in the Premier League.

“I had offers which would have changed my life right there and then. I was second guessing myself, should I leave, should I not?”

Phillips, 24, opted to stay and sign a five-year contract at Elland Road and was key to their Championship success last season.

Head coach Marcelo Bielsa hugged him during the celebrations on the night Leeds won promotion and told him: "You're the best."

Phillips won his first England cap earlier this month and his gran Valerie, whom he is very close to, says she told him she would not have moved away from Leeds.

“Someone said to me that he might move,” she said. “I said to him ‘what I am going to do?’. He said ‘sell the house and come with me’.

“I’d too much to leave behind if I left Leeds. I’ve got 23 grandchildren, 23 great grand children and one great, great grandchild on the way, so it wouldn’t have done for me to move.”

* Take Us Home launches on Amazon Prime on Thursday, September 17

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