Liverpool are still considering signing a range of different midfielder options as the transfer window heads into its final stages, and one potential target comes from a Premier League rival.
Despite having signed Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai and Wataru Endo this summer, Liverpool are still desperate to bolster their midfield after losing five players in that position over the past few months.
Phillips has struggled for minutes at Manchester City since moving from Leeds United, with the England international making just two starts in the Premier League last campaign.
While Phillips himself would rather stay in Manchester, he has acknowledged that he wants first-team minutes sooner rather than later.
VIDEO: Why Dominik Szoboszlai is Liverpool's best signing in years
"We have just won the Treble, so there is no reason for me to leave, other than if I am not playing [then] I will obviously have to think about it," he said earlier in the summer. "I cannot give it 12 months and say 'I am not playing so I am going to leave'."
With Guardiola unwilling to drop Rodri from his defensive midfield role, City are exploring options for Phillips this transfer window. Reports have suggested they are looking to loan him out for a season in order to help him get his career back on track, but a substantial offer from Liverpool could force a sale.
Worth around £27.5m according to Transfermarkt, City will certainly want to recoup a large proportion of their initial investment if they do sell to Liverpool.
He would slot straight into Jurgen Klopp's side, too, allowing Alexis Mac Allister and Dominik Szoboszlai to play further forward while he protects the back line.
More Liverpool stories
Liverpool transfer news is coming thick and fast as we enter the final few weeks of the summer window.
Jurgen Klopp has opened up about the club’s decision to launch a mega-money bid for Caicedo – but the Reds manager could be on his way out of Anfield sooner than anticipated. Meanwhile, Liverpool are targeting as many as four midfielders amid their struggles in the transfer market.
In our season preview of all 92 clubs, FourFourTwo discusses how Liverpool can get back to winning ways, with Salah proving pivotal in any future success this season.
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Ryan is a staff writer for FourFourTwo, joining the team full-time in October 2022. He first joined Future in December 2020, working across FourFourTwo, Golf Monthly, Rugby World and Advnture's websites, before eventually earning himself a position with FourFourTwo permanently. After graduating from Cardiff University with a degree in Journalism and Communications, Ryan earned a NCTJ qualification to further develop as a writer while a Trainee News Writer at Future.