Nathaniel Phillips

Nathaniel Phillips

Nathaniel Phillips

Current Club: Liverpool FC.

Previous Clubs: Bolton Wanderers.

Loan Clubs: Bournemouth, VfB Stuttgart.

International: N/A.

Trophies Won: English League Cup 2022.

In lots of respects Nat Phillips is like a throwback to a former age, when centre-backs were actually defenders, rather than just tall midfielders as most seem to be now. That has meant he has struggled to find a place in the Liverpool team, despite never letting anyone down when he did play. His passing is better than he is given credit for, but Phillips is not as comfortable on the ball as the modern day centre-backs tend to be.

He also lacks a bit in pace, which is a weakness in a team looking to play a high line, and is not good on the turn. Like most big men he takes a bit of time to get turned and on the move, which can cause him problems against nippy little forwards or balls over the top in behind him. What Phillips does have in abundance is heart and a willingness to listen and learn. If he is in and out of the team, he can just seem a bit clumsy, but give him a run of games and let his confidence grow and he looks much better.

The key for Phillips is his positioning, if you are up against a team that looks to work off set pieces or crossing to create their chances, then he is one of the better defenders out there. You do not want him one-on-one on the halfway line against a man running at him with pace but put him in the penalty box and he will head everything clear or get his body in the way of things. It is like the ball is drawn to his head from corners and crosses, but it is down to his excellent positioning.

Will he ever be a contender for the Ballon d'Or? No. But he is a good, solid defender that will not bottle out of challenges or duck under shots rather than get hit.

Requested by - Ed007