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“Missed their shot” – Inside Barcelona’s failed January transfer hijack for Manchester City midfielder



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Barcelona attempted to hijack West Ham’s loan move for Manchester City midfielder Kalvin Phillips.

The 28-year-old completed a short-term loan move to the London Stadium for the remainder of the current campaign in January, moving to West Ham despite interest from a number of Premier League sides.

Phillips, who made just two starts for Manchester City prior to leaving the Etihad Stadium last month, is bidding to reignite his career ahead of the European Championships in Germany this summer, with the midfielder’s place in Gareth Southgate’s England squad under threat.

The Englishman made only six starts during an 18-month spell at Manchester City, having swapped Elland Road for the Etihad in a £42 million transfer in July 2022.

Phillips was part of Pep Guardiola’s treble-winning squad last season and also won both the UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup during the opening months of the current campaign.

The midfielder has made two appearances for West Ham since moving to east London, starting against Bournemouth and featuring against Manchester United at Old Trafford last weekend.

David Moyes’ side agreed a deal to sign Phillips despite interest from Newcastle United, Tottenham, Fulham, Crystal Palace and Juventus.

Barcelona are also claimed to have been interested in signing Phillips for the remainder of the season, with the La Liga side having considered hijacking West Ham’s move for the midfielder.

Sports Witness relay a report by Marca, who claim that Barcelona were unable to sort out their finances in time to make a bid for the 28-year-old, despite wanting to sign Phillips after an injury to Alejandro Balde.

The Catalan club ‘did not arrive in time’ to sign the Englishman and ‘missed their shot’, despite believing that the midfielder was a ‘good option’ to sign on loan.

Phillips’ future beyond the current season is still to be determined, with West Ham not obligated to buy the midfielder permanently for the 2024/25 campaign.

The treble-winner rejected the opportunity to leave Manchester City on a permanent basis last summer, despite huge interest from across Europe.