IAN Holloway singled out veteran striker Kevin Phillips for praise for the impact his half-time introduction made in today’s 2-1 derby victory over Charlton.
The Addicks were in complete control at the break but only had Ricardo Fuller’s 15th minute goal to show for their dominance.
Palace looked second best but it was a different story after the interval when Phillips was handed his debut to partner Glenn Murray up front, with the Eagles’ top scorer bagging a late brace to take his seasonal tally up to 25 in all competitions.
But it was Thursday’s deadline day signing who made the biggest difference for the Selhurst Park supremo.
Holloway said: “Kev Phillips came on and we looked a different team.
“That is nothing to do with Jacob Butterfield, we looked a different team because I caused their two centre halves a problem and that’s tactics.
“If you start like that it might not always pan out anyway but it is really important that you get a real strong bench and the choices I had today, they all made a difference when they came on.
“It wasn’t the people I brought off because normally they are very, very good and that’s what you need – strength in depth.
“It feels great to get a win, it feels great how we finished the game instead of letting a late goal in every now and again like we have done recently.
“That’s a vital win for us.
“It puts us safe believe it or not because that is 51 points and no-one has ever got relegated with that, so now we can have a gallop on and see how many we get by the end of the season.
“We’ve got to beat last year’s target. We are well on the way to doing that and we will see how far that takes us.”
Holloway added: “Kevin Phillips is just a master class.
“Look how Glenn Murray played in the second half because Kev knows what he is doing.
“It was brilliant to see Johnnie and Dobs come on.
“That’s great for the lads, I feel we deserved that over the last few weeks.
“It was important we’ve managed to get a decent result.”
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