Despite Declan Rice’s return to training on Thursday, England’s midfielder Kalvin Phillips has yet to make his World Cup debut as the Three Lions prepare to face France in the quarterfinals on Saturday. Phillips was expected to play a defensive midfield role at the World Cup. It was after starting every game at Euro 2020 and leading England to the final, where they lost on penalties to Italy. However, he has yet to debut due to a long-standing shoulder injury.
England’s midfielder Kalvin Phillips is ready for France’s match
Phillips was named on Gareth Southgate’s squad for Qatar despite the injury. The 27-year-old Manchester City midfielder has been working hard to get back in shape and says he’s ready to play whenever his team needs him.
Phillips is eager to play but recognizes that it will be difficult for him to beat out Jordan Henderson, Jude Bellingham, and Rice. They have all excelled in the middle of the field. The three will have their hands full in a matchup with Kylian Mbappé’s rampaging France.
Phillips said the English team was overjoyed to learn that striker Raheem Sterling will be available to play against France this weekend. After a house invasion, Sterling went to England to be with his family. He missed England’s 3-0 round-of-16 victory over Senegal.
“Yeah (I am ready). I believe Dec is fit, he s back in training, and he s fine,” Phillips told reporters. “If something goes wrong, I’ll be there and do my best to be fit for 90 minutes. I want to play as many minutes as possible.
“Regardless of whether Dec is playing or I am, we ll do our best.”
“A massive lift,” said Phillips. “He s a fantastic player and had to go home to deal with everything that is going on. We hope everything is alright and he can rejoin us and play a big part in the next game.
“It is t a nice feeling – when you are so far away from home, and you’ve got family at home.
“There isn t much we can do about it. But Raheem feels good enough now to join back up with us,,,,,, and we’re very happy about that.”