Emile Heskey has become a bit of a laughing stock over the last few years and always seems to be the butt of every football joke.
His goal scoring record has never been great, 7 goals in 62 England appearances and 117 goals in 546 league games for five different clubs. At the ripe age of 34 I can’t imagine that record improving either so the big question is; why would Ipswich want Heskey?
Paul Jewell has highlighted in the press on a couple of occasions that he wants a big physical striker and at 6ft 2in Heskey is certainly that type of player!
He isn’t a glamorous striker or a goal scorer but he can still add something special to any team he joins. He is great at holding up the ball, making simple passes and he works hard to get back to defend when needed. Also, after playing so many years in the Premier League it is obvious that Heskey has great vision and intelligence as a player so he would be a level above any other Ipswich player in that sense.
He may have lost some of ability he had in his prime but personally, I think it would amazing to have Heskey on the bench every game ready to replace Chopra when the time was right. The former Leicester striker has never been known for his pace and he would probably be used as a sub in most games, so his age shouldn’t effect his ability to do a good job for Ipswich.
To win The Championship not only does a side need a team of technically gifted players but they also need gritty players who will help grind out results even when the team is out of form. Many times last season Ipswich would score 1 or 2 goals early on then concede 2 or 3 in the second half and it was hard to watch the team fall apart in the later stages of so many games.
When Ipswich are only just holding onto a 1-0 lead it would be great see Heskey come off the bench, play simple passes to keep the ball and give the team an extra man defensively. He would without a doubt help Ipswich grind out the type of results that previously they have failed to.
Additionally, Jewell has just brought in a fair few young players so the team could probably do with an experienced figure coming in. The fans generally seem to like the idea of having Heskey an option. In a recent online survey 74% of Ipswich fans said they would be in favour of Heskey joining and the former England international was signed by Paul Jewell at Wigan in 2006. Obviously Jewell knows and rates Heskey as a player and it seems like the fans also rate him.
Whether he is laughed at or not I don’t think anyone at Ipswich will care as long as Heskey helps bring in positive results.He plays a role that a lot of people fail to appreciate and he sacrifices his goal scoring record for the sake of the team.
The only reason Heskey is mocked so much is because he is probably one of the most high profile players that play that under appreciated role within a team. It is not his fault that he was picked by England managers on so many occasions and it is important to remember that he can still score goals even though it isn’t the best part of his game.
I for one am hoping that Ipswich do manage to sign him as there aren’t many strikers that can help grind out results like Heskey does.