Stoke City enter hunt for Championship prospect
After a breakout season in the Championship, Matt Phillips is drawing heaps of attention regarding where his club future may lie and Stoke City seem keen to ensure that it’s at the Brittania Stadium.
The Potters have emerged as possible suitors to take the winger on and will join the likes of Liverpool, Newcastle and Chelsea in the race for his signature.
Tony Pulis’ side were being linked with a move for Blackburn starlet Junior Hoilett but after Bayern Munich and other European elite clubs appeared as interested in the Canadian, Stoke may be forced out of the running.
Hoilett is out of contract in the summer and will available on a free transfer, meaning that interest in his services will be extremely high.
Phillips is a worthy alternative however, as the youngster has shown on numerous occasions this campaign.
Finding first team opportunities at Bloomfield Road hard to come by, Phillips was sent to Sheffield United at the start of the season on a one-month loan deal so that he may rack up some decent playing time.
The temporary deal couldn’t have yielded better results for Phillips either and in six games for the Blades, Phillips managed to score on five occasions for the League One outfit.
When returning to his parent club, the 20 year-old unsurprisingly found his way into the starting XI on a more regular basis and Ian Holloway’s faith has been well repaid with Phillips scoring six goals in just 16 starts for the Tangerines since returning.
The Blackpool manager was however, displeased last month when his starlet opted to play for Scotland instead of the English national team.
Despite this news, Pulis will be encouraged by Phillips’ performances so far this season and if Jermaine Pennant is to depart the Brittania this summer as some are protracting, squad space and funds may well be available for the purchase.
Holloway won’t be keen on selling his prospect but should their Premier League counterparts meet the player’s £5m valuation, he may have little choice in the matter.