Phillips hat-trick is just the Christmas tonic
Matt Phillips scored a hat-trick as Blackpool came from behind to beat Barnsley 3-1 at Oakwell.
The hosts took the lead in the 18th minute when Matt Done capitalised on poor defending, but Pool turned the game on its head and now find themselves just one point behind the playoff places.
Matt Gilks suffered a groin problem going into the game which meant Mark Howard would deputise in goal and the former Aberdeen stopper didn't disappoint - drawing lavish praise from Ian Holloway after the game.
But they started slowly and the Tykes had the better of the opening exchanges - Done turning in Jim O'Brien's cross after Ian Evatt's mistake.
That woke the Seasiders up and they began to take charge of the contest. Phillips thumped in the equaliser past Luke Steele on 37 minutes - although the goalkeeper won't be pleased that he failed to stop the shot.
After the break, Phillips scored a second in bizarre fashion. Receiving a short corner, the winger attempted to find an away attacker with a flighted cross that ended up evading everyone and sneaked in beyond the keeper.
And the points were safe with 10 minutes remaining when Stephen Crainey's intelligent run into the box was abruptly ended by Scott Wiseman, with Phillips confidently dispatching the resulting penalty.
From there on in Pool looked comfortable in possession and saw the game out professionally - something they've failed to do in recent fixtures.
Good news too were the returns of Elliot Grandin (sporting tangerine gloves from the bench) and Alex Baptiste as the team go into the away trip to Birmingham City in high Christmas spirits.