JETS INSIDER - Emile Heskey

In this week’s edition of Jets Insider, Emile Heskey is in the hot seat answering questions submitted by Members and supporters.

In this week-s edition of Jets Insider, former England international Emile Heskey is in the hot seat answering questions submitted by the Club-s Members and supporters.

The marquee striker covers topics ranging from his toughest opponents in the A-League, his footballing role models and his thoughts on Vegemite.

@lukedurbin asks via Twitter: Which team has been the biggest challenge for you personally to play against so far in the A-League, and why?

Emile Heskey (EH): I thought Adelaide played quite well. It was obviously my first game and I wasn-t as fit as I am now, but Adelaide were very strong and they moved the ball well.

Brad Smith asks via email: Have you been trying to spruik the A-League to any famous mates of yours who may be off contract next year who play in any of the big leagues around the world?

EH: I haven-t yet, but I-m sure they-ll be watching and are aware of the A-League. People in England have known about the A-League ever since Dwight Yorke and Robbie Fowler came over, so they were the catalysts for players like myself to come here and hopefully there will be others in the future.

@Buddha14 asks via Twitter: Emile, loved watching you play for my beloved Villa, but what was your favourite Villa memory and favourite player?

EH: My favourite Aston Villa moment was playing in the Cup final, even though we lost it was nice to play in a Cup final again. My best teammate while I was there was either Stiliyan Petrov or Stephen Ireland. They-re both very talented players.

@joshholt22 asks via Twitter: Who was the best manager you worked under?

EH: There are two. Martin O-Neill while I was at Villa and Gerard Houllier at Liverpool.

Pete Reynolds asks via email: Marquees, like you ADP and Ono have lifted the profile of A-League on the pitch and attracted the fans. However, in everything I-ve read, you also seem to take great delight in mentoring the younger boys and giving them confidence so they can realise their full potential. There were some disparaging comments in the Italian press a couple of weeks ago about the standard here and, by extension, the ability of Australian football to rate on the wider stage. What-s your take (not just on the Jets) as regards the younger generation that-s coming through?

EH: I think the generation coming through is very good. I-m not familiar with a lot of the names to be fair, but it looks promising for Australian football.

There-s one lad who plays in the midfield for the Central Coast, Tom Rogic, and he-s very good. The other one I was going to say, but he-s obviously from New Zealand, is Marco Rojas for the Victory.

It-s great for the league to have these talented youngsters coming through and it bodes well for when they make the step-up to international level.

@boomshanka1976 asks via Twitter: Would you play for England if called up despite now playing so far away?

EH: I-ve done my time with England. They-ve got a good selection of young players coming through now, so there-s no reason for me to go back to playing international football.

@isaac__fisher asks via Twitter: What do you do to prepare for a game?

EH: I don-t have any rituals or anything like that, it-s just about making sure you eat the right food and get enough rest before the game.

@Chrem93 asks via Twitter: Hey Emile, great work so far this season, keep it up! What are your thoughts on the Emerging Jets program?

EH: It-s brilliant. Anything to do with giving kids opportunities and helping them along the way is always important. It-s something that they do from the age of five or six in England and I think it will definitely help develop some talented players here in Newcastle.

@jetsfanchick asks via Twitter: In your career which player have you had as a role model?

EH: For me, the guys I looked up to while I was growing up were people like John Barnes and Ian Wright because they were players I could readily identify with.

Watching them play on the stage that they did, and seeing the level that they got to, especially John Barnes, was brilliant. I don-t think I could have had a better role model really.

@FN343 asks via Twitter: Who have been the most passionate fans you have played against and why?

EH: In England, probably Newcastle United just because they-re so loud and they really get behind their team. In Europe I-d probably say Galatasary, for the same sort of reasons.

In England the support is very family orientated with a lot of women and children at the games, the same as it is here. In Turkey, it-s basically just a load of men coming to the game and screaming, so they-re very, very loud.

@JamesWhyte8 asks via Twitter: Do you still look out for Wigan results? You-re still a legend down at the DW! All the best down under!

EH: It-s nice over here because you actually get to see all of the Premier League games, even though they-re on at crazy hours.

I watched Wigan-s last game against Newcastle and it wasn-t a great result, but they play some really nice football and I like watching them. Their style of play is arguably one of the best to watch in the league.

Nick Fletcher asks via email: As a Villa supporter it was difficult to watch the team under McLeish. How does it affect the players when the supporters are so against the coach/manager?

EH: It-s probably not the best situation, but as players we-ve got to try and block that out of our minds and focus on the performances. The way we were playing wasn-t the best at the time either, so it didn-t really help the cause.

@MrGlass23 asks via Twitter: Hey Emile, have you tried Vegemite yet? If so, did you like it? And if not, do you plan on trying it at all?

EH: (Laughs) No, I haven-t tried it yet and I don-t really plan to either. It doesn-t look very appetising!

Thank you for all the great questions. We hope to see you at the F3 Derby.

For next week-s Jets Insider interview, head coach Gary van Egmond will answer YOUR questions. Simply tweet your question using the #JetsInsider hashtag or send your question to communications@huntersportsgroup.com by COB Wednesday. Then check back in Jets Insider next week to see if your question is answered.