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The Phillips evolution under Bielsa

Marcelo Bielsa has been at Leeds United for almost six months and the Whites look almost unrecognisable compared to the side that limped to a 13th place finish last season.

With limited activity in the summer transfer window, Bielsa has got his side playing some of the most attractive football in the Championship as they sit second in the table with 20 games in the books.

One of the key narratives this season is just how much of an improvement Bielsa has got out of several members of Leeds’ existing squad.

Matuesz Klich has come back from the wilderness of a loan spell in Holland last season to become a fixture in the midfield, Kemar Roofe has gone from splitting his time on the wing and up front to become one of the Championship’s most potent strikers, while Liam Cooper’s performances in the heart of defence have contributed to Leeds having one of the best back-lines in the division.

But if you were handing out a most-improved player award for the season now, Kalvin Phillips would likely get the nod.

The Thorp Arch product has been shifted back by Bielsa, playing either just in front of the defence or as a part of the back-line and is playing the best football of his career in this new role.

But how has Phillips, who turned 23 at the weekend, managed to transform his game so quickly? And what do the stats say about his new role?

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