Phillips strikes fear into Brighton

Kevin Phillips celebrates scoring against the Seagulls.
Kevin Phillips celebrates scoring against the Seagulls.
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KEVIN Phillips is hoping to remind Brighton exactly what they missed out on when Gus Poyet’s promotion challengers visit Blackpool on Saturday.

The Seagulls tried to sign the 38-year-old last summer.

And their failure to seal the deal soon came back to haunt them when Phillips blasted two goals in Pool’s 2-2 draw on the south coast at the start of the season.

Phillips has scored 11 more times since and is hoping to add to his tally in the return fixture.

Manager Ian Holloway wouldn’t bet against it. The Pool boss said: “I believe Kev will always score goals and it is great to have him around. He has proved such an important player for us.

“His knowledge of how to play the ball, when to play it and how to keep it is incredible. He is a master of his craft.

“He’s like a bottle of wine – he gets better as he gets older and he has proved as good a free transfer as I have ever signed. If I could have played him in the Premier League last season I would have. Nobody scores goals better than him.

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“Those goals at Brighton in August just summed up how good he is – especially that beautiful volley in stoppage time – and I’m sure he’ll keep on scoring between now and the end of the season.”

Meanwhile, Pool’s other Phillips, Matt, has revealed his 21st birthday celebrations took a bit of a hit.

The winger had a party lined up on Saturday to celebrate his landmark – but the result and poor performance at Peterborough meant things didn’t go with as much of a swing as he’d have liked.

Phillips said: “I had a party at home after the game. It was my 21st birthday, so I had to celebrate it, but if we’d got the three points I’d have been in a better frame of mind.

“The Peterborough game was just one of those days. Both teams had a couple of early opportunities , so it could have gone either way. Maybe if we had got the first goal it would have been a different story. We’ve had a couple of defeats now and we’ll be looking to get back on track quickly.

“We’ve got a lot of big games coming up but I believe we’ll be able to pick ourselves up, get our form back and start winning again. I strongly believe we will get in the play-offs.”

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