England manager Gareth Southgate could be set for a boost just two weeks before the 2022 World Cup in Qatar after Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola gave his latest update surrounding Three Lions pair Kyle Walker and Kalvin Phillips.
Guardiola confirmed via reports on the club’s official Twitter account that Phillips will be in the squad that takes on Chelsea in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday, signaling the former Leeds United academy product’s return to the senior setup after making just three appearances across thirteen minutes of actions since his £45m summer arrival from Yorkshire.
Phillips, an icon at Elland Road as a key figure at Leeds during their promotion campaign as well as their credible return to the Premier League the following season, has failed to stake a claim in the City setup after an injury has left him unavailable for both club and country, but many had expected him to, once again, play a vital role under Southgate in a similar vein that saw his on-pitch partnership with Declan Rice prove crucial in the Three Lions’ efforts.
As for Walker, his full return to the City team is slightly more delayed, though Guardiola confirmed that the veteran right-back was feeling good during his recovery period, which could be massive for Southgate’s England after Chelsea star Reece James is set to miss the tournament in Qatar, leaving Southgate with a big question to answer on the right side of his defense.
Despite their respective absence, City has gotten on just fine both at home and abroad in 2022-23 and currently sit top of the Premier League after a 2-1 win at home to Fulham which temporarily pulled them ahead of Arsenal who has a date with aforementioned Chelsea tomorrow at Stamford Bridge.
City also topped their group in the Champions League and will no doubt posture themselves to make a deep run on the continent, with Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne expected to lead the way.