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West Ham’s Kalvin Phillips hopes red card at Forest marks end of run of bad luck

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 18 Feb 2024

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Beleaguered midfielder Kalvin Phillips hopes his red card at Nottingham Forest marks the end of a run of bad luck and has vowed to get his West Ham career up and running.

The 28-year-old has endured a horrible start to life at the London Stadium following his January loan move from Manchester City, where his career stalled following his 2022 transfer from Leeds.

After being culpable for goals conceded against Bournemouth and Manchester United, he then was sent off in the Hammers’ 2-0 defeat at the City Ground for picking up two yellow cards in the space of two minutes and 56 seconds.

Phillips was desperate for his move to be a “fresh start” and wants to put it right.

“They say bad luck comes in threes, so let’s hope I’ve had my three pieces of it and I can kick on now,” he said.

“I wanted this to be a fresh start, to really get my head down and go for it. It’s not gone as I would have hoped. Everyone can see that.

“But I know football. I’m experienced enough to know that if I get my head down and grit my teeth and do the basics right that things will turn.

“It’s easy to say, but now I’ve got to do it.

“There are certain things you need to do on a football pitch. OK, I was training with the best team in the world, but games get you sharper.

“You can train all you like but you are never going to really get match fit and match sharp unless you play games, do you?

“So, that’s the reason I’m frustrated and gutted.”

West Ham were trailing to Taiwo Awoniyi’s first-half opener when Phillips picked up two quick bookings in the second half, the first for grappling with Nicolas Dominguez and then fouling Morgan Gibbs-White.

He tried to speak to referee Thomas Bramall after the game, but left the City Ground frustrated.

“I’m annoyed with myself over the first booking. He’s got my shoulder and I’ve tried to push him off – perhaps next time I should kick the ball at him to make my point,” he added.

“I was frustrated and we were losing. But it’s something I’ll learn from.

“With the second, I’ve not made any contact with Morgan (Gibbs-White). He’s jumped up and that’s fair enough but – honestly – I didn’t make any contact.

“I’ve waited outside the referee’s room to have a chat with him.

“I wanted to have a word but it’s been half an hour now and he’s not come out. I don’t know if he knows I was there or not. I didn’t want to batter him. I just wanted to have a conversation with him about it.

“But it looks like I’m going home now without saying my piece and I’m just disappointed – more so because I’m working hard to get myself back into a position where I can help and now I’ve got to miss a game.”

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