By Kevin Phillips

24th Feb, 2020 | 12:33pm

'God-like' - Exclusive: Phillips lauds Sunderland ace who 'Works his socks off'

Kevin Phillips has heaped praise on Chris Maguire for his display for Sunderland in their 3-0 home win against Bristol Rovers this weekend.

The former Black Cats star, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, even suggested the winger could achieve ‘God-like status’ on Wearside if he can take Sunderland back to the Championship this season.

The 31-year-old was pivotal as the Black Cats comfortably beat Bristol Rovers at the Stadium of Light, registering a hat-trick of assists.

Maguire has scored 10 goals and contributed 12 assists in 34 appearances in League One this campaign.

When asked how important the former Scotland international is at the Stadium of Light, Phillips told Football Insider: “Extremely valuable.

“Everyone knows he has got the ability and thankfully for Phil Parkinson and the team he is producing it regularly now. That comes from playing week in and week out. The manager putting his arm around him and telling him he is a good player. They are reaping the rewards.

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“He is a good player and if he is not scoring he works his socks off, he does a shift for the team and you do not underestimate that when a player is not having a great game but is working well for the side. At the moment he is doing everything.

“If he scores the goal that gets them promoted at the end of the season he will get God-like status up in the North-East.”  

Maguire was signed from Bury in the summer of 2018 and has made 80 appearances for the club to date.

Saturday’s victory strengthened Phil Parkinson’s side’s claims on automatic promotion this season with only three points separating them from table-toppers Rotherham.

In other Sunderland news, Kevin Phillips has told Football Insider 27-year-old is comparable to Premier League stars after worrying update.