Norwich City have today completed the signing of ex-Liverpool prospect Adam Phillips. The 19-year-old midfielder joins the Canaries on a free transfer. He signs a two-year deal with an option to extend that for a further year.
Phillips’ name is added to Norwich’s extensive list of summer recruits. The club is undgergoing an overhaul spearheaded by new head coach Daniel Farke and sporting director Stuart Webber. Phillips evidently impressed on trial during the club’s pre-season tour of Germany. It is expected that Phillips will join the Under 23’s side. This is no doubt considered a major coup by the Norwich academy.
Norwich City sign Midfielder Adam Phillips
Once regarded as Liverpool’s brightest prospects; Phillips endured many injuries at Anfield including a reoccurring back problem. That issue ultimately hindered his development. Phillips supreme passing ability saw him inevitably crowned as the heir to Steven Gerrard’s throne in the heart of Liverpool’s side.
Former Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers recognised the talent Phillips had to offer. Rodgers cast him into the first team for training during a pre-season tour of America in 2014. His technical ability was undeniable. Rodgers even included Phillips within a clutch of youngsters who made the squad for a Europa League tie versus Bordeaux.
Jordan Rossiter started the game, whilst Cameron Brannigan and Pedro Chirivella made the bench. Phillips spoke passionately regarding the experience despite not featuring. Phillips failed to establish his place in the Liverpool under-23 side. His time split between the under-23 and under-18 squads.
Despite this, he did receive significant praise from youth team manager Neil Critchley who spoke of his ‘wonderful range of passing’ after his stunning pass allowing Ben Woodburn to give early indications of his own promise with a fantastic chip against Cardiff in a Youth Cup victory at Prenton Park.
The aforementioned back injury hampered Phillips development at Liverpool. Last campaign, Phillips played only 16 times, scoring two goals for the youth side at Anfield. He also made four appearances in the UEFA Youth Cup, assisting once. There is no doubting Phillips obvious technical talent, but the obvious question mark is surrounding his fitness.
His release from Merseyside ended a 10-year association with the club he joined during his adolescence, but the central midfielder will hope to resuscitate his development in Norfolk.
On his arrival, Phillips said “It’s a great move for me and a great opportunity to come to a club like Norwich,” before going onto add “I’ve heard the fans are supposed to be very loyal and the area is very nice, so I’m looking forward to seeing what the future holds. I felt the trial went really well, and it was great to be involved on the tour to Germany and to get a feel for what the coaching team want. I’m really pleased to be joining.”
If Phillips can enhance his football education at Carrow Road and retain his fitness; this could be quite the coup for the Canaries. To secure the services of Phillips is evidently a major feat following the impression he made on academy staff during his week’s trial in Germany. Will Phillips ever bridge the gap and step up to the Norwich senior side?