The Bolton-born star has earned rave reviews for his old school approach to defending and admits he shared many similar traits to his manager.
Speaking during an interview with the Times, Phillips said: "I think we're quite similar as people, quite similar in sense of humour and I know I'm not the most pleasing on the eye — when you compare me to someone like Virgil [van Dijk] and how cool and calm he looks.
"By all accounts from the manager, he was the same. I've heard him describe himself as having a first division brain but third division feet and I think that's where he draws the similarities. And I think it gives him joy to see someone like me succeed."
Phillips has been on Klopp's radar for several years, after being promoted to the first team ranks in 2018 after shortages.
He explained: "I went up initially just to be a mannequin, for shape drills.
"What impressed him was [my] training and my ability to take information on board and learn."