Kevin Phillips's rise to fame is a remarkable "Roy of the Rovers" fantasy story. Four years ago he was stacking shelves in Dixons and playing for non-League Baldock Town. Now, in only his third season with Sunderland, he has broken every club goalscoring record and currently tops the Premiership goalscoring charts, while for England he has shown boss Kevin Keegan that he has the ability to perform at the highest level as well. This text is an in-depth look into the lifestyle of a high-profile professional footballer at one of the biggest clubs in the country. Tales of chicanery in the dressing room with manager Peter Reid and fellow players Niall Quinn and Michael Gray are mixed with Phillips's wry observations of life in the "fishbowl" of a football-mad city and the pressure that comes with being a messiah to the fans.
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Kevin Phillips was born in Stevenage, Hertfordshire. He was voted the 1997/98 Nationwide League Footballer of the Year when, in his first season with the club, he top scored with 35 goals. Despite a toe-injury which kept him out for much of the 1998/99 season, the 25-year-old Phillips managed an amazing 22 goals. He currently heads the Premiership goalscoring charts. Luke Nicoli is Features Editor for Shoot magazine. He covers football each week for the Sunday Mirror and Sunday World, and appears each week on Nickelodeon TV's Friday football show. He was brought up together with Kevin Phillips in their home town of Stevenage, and the two have remained friends for almost 20 years.Review:
'His progress in football is even more far-fetched than the plotline of the film When Saturday Comes' Independent. 'He excites me...watching him in England training I thought: 'This is where he belongs'. ' Kevin Keegan
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