BARNSLEY midfielder Adam Phillips is hoping he’s saved his best ‘til last as the Reds gear up to face Sheffield Wednesday on Monday.
The 25-year-old playmaker, who came through the ranks at Liverpool, signed for Michael Duff’s side on a permanent deal in the summer.
When he first broke into the side, he was playing on either side of the striker in the front three – but since he moved back into the centre of midfield his game has improved massively.
He said: “When I first came I was still working on my fitness and getting game time.
“I played a few games in the Papa John’s Trophy just to top myself up.
“I felt like I was training well so the manager wanted to give me a chance.
“It wasn’t in the right position as we found out but as we got to know each other a bit more I found my position and I really started to kick on.”
Phillips has scored eight goals and grabbed nine assists in League One so far this season – creating 28 chances in that time.
He came incredibly close to adding to those figures in the semi-final second leg at Oakwell last Friday as his spectacular effort cannoned off the bar – but he’s hoping he’s saved his best until the last game of the season,
“It was close on Friday coming off the bar but hopefully I’ll pull one out of the bag on Monday,” he said.
“I hope I’m saving my best ‘til last.”
Monday will mark the third time Michael Duff has met Darren Moore this season – with the Reds winning the previous two matches – but Phillips said the team don’t need any reminder of how big the game is, no matter who they were playing.
“I’m looking forward to it - it’s going to be a great occasion for the whole club,” he said.
“It’s a big game at Wembley in the play-off final.
“And then just to add a little bit more to it it’s against our local rivals.
“We’ve just got to focus on ourselves.
“I’m sure they’ll have a gameplan for us and we’ll have a gameplan for them.
“It doesn’t matter who we’re playing – it’s always going to be a massive game.”
It’ll be the first time the former Morecambe man will step foot onto the grass in the capital – but he’ll be backed by dozens of his family who are making their way down for the game.
He added: “I’ve been to Wembley before but I’ve not actually played there so it’s going to be a massive experience for myself and my family.
“I’ve got about 20 or 30 tickets for family so I’ll have a lot of support down there and obviously the Barnsley fans will be coming in their numbers as well.”