Kevin Phillips still undecided on future after lure of Premier League may be too good to turn down.
Veteran striker Kevin Phillips says he will take his time before deciding whether or not to pursue his career, after netting the penalty that gave Crystal Palace victory over Watford in the Championship play-off final.
The 39-year-old converted a nerveless top-corner penalty in extra time at Wembley Stadium on Monday to give Palace a 1-0 and secure a financial windfall reportedly worth £120 million ($181 million, 140 million euros).
Phillips is currently on loan at Palace from Blackpool and with his contract due to expire at the end of the season, he had announced his intention to retire.
However, Palace manager Ian Holloway says he would be eager to keep him on the books at Selhurst Park.
Phillips turns 40 in July and, if he were to accept an offer from Palace, he would eclipse 39-year-old Manchester United midfielder Ryan Giggs as the oldest outfield player currently playing in the Premier League.
“Whether it’s my last game or not, I doubt it will be, but it’s probably my last chance at Wembley,” Phillips said.
“I’m pretty much sure I will carry on in some capacity. Where? I don’t know. I’m just going to go on holiday now and relax. I don’t want to be making a decision in the next couple of days that I’ll regret.
“We’ll see what happens. I’ve had a couple of offers already, but I haven’t said yes or no.”
Phillips admitted that the opportunity to return to the Premier League, two years after he last played in the top flight with Birmingham City, would be difficult to turn down.
“I’m not daft. If something was offered to me (by Palace), then I’d have to consider it,” he added.
“But I’ve got to make the right decision because of the commute (to south London) — I’m still based in the Midlands. But, yes, that would make me the oldest outfield player in the Premier League.
“It would be a dream. If anyone asked me when I started out at 20 whether I’d still be playing at 40, I’d have said no. It would be a big lure, let’s put it that way.”
Phillips, who started his career with Watford, had experienced disappointment in the play-off final on three previous occasions with Sunderland, West Bromwich Albion and Blackpool.
“This has topped my career, to be honest,” he said.
“I’ve pretty much achieved everything I’ve wanted to achieve — I won the Carling (League) Cup here at Wembley; I’ve won Golden Boots; played for my country; I’ve had relegations and had promotions; but I’ve never won promotion via a play-off.
“I’ve experienced this game. This is my fourth time in the play-offs — three losses — everyone says it’s the best way to get promoted and I didn’t believe that until now. It’s a fantastic feeling and obviously to have a major part in it is awesome.”