City (England), FC Liverpool (England), Birmingham City (England)
European SuperCup winner (Liverpool)
2001 UEFA Cup winner (Liverpool)
2001 FA Cup winner (Liverpool)
2001 League Cup winner (Liverpool)
2003 League Cup winner (Liverpool)
2001 Charity Shield winner (Liverpool)
Emile Heskey (born 11 January 1978 in Evington,
Leicester, England) to an Antiguan father and Barbudan mother is
a professional football player for Birmingham City F.C. and the
English national team. He is a powerful centre forward who can
also play as a strong running left winger - though this position
often wasted his talents when he was forced to play there under
Heskey attended the same secondary school as Gary Lineker, and
like Lineker, started his professional football career at
Leicester City. He made his league debut in 1995, and then made
30 appearances for the Foxes in 1995/96 - helping City earn
promotion to the Premiership. He starred alongside Michael Owen
in the England Under-18 team which finished third in the
European Championships in France. Prior to his professional
debut, he was a ball boy at the 1994 Football league Division 1
play-off final, which took place at The Empire Stadium, Wembley,
between Leicester City and Derby County.
Heskey won his first major honour in English football when he
helped Leicester to victory over Middlesbrough in the
Worthington Cup final, repeated in 2000 with a 2-1 win against
Tranmere Rovers and in 2001 when Liverpool defeated Birmingham
The towering striker made his England debut in a friendly
against Hungary in Budapest in a 1-1 draw and on his first start,
against Argentina at Wembley, he gave a performance which won
him the Man of the Match award. That showing ensured he was in
England's Euro 2000 squad. However his two substitute
performances in the tournament were poor as England crashed out.
Considered one of football's 'nicest guys', Heskey joined
Liverpool in April 2000 in an £11 million move that was one of
the worst kept secrets in football. Heskey's move set the record
transfer fee for the Merseyside club.
He made his Anfield debut in the Premiership clash with
Sunderland and played well but the season finished with
continuing doubts about his goalscoring prowess. During the
2000/01 season Heskey put an end to those scoring worries by
smashing home 23 goals for the Reds and rocketing himself up the
England pecking order.
He continued his scoring exploits against Spain in February 2001
when he scored one of England's three goals in the friendly
victory. But Heskey was relegated to the bench for England's
next match against Finland, although came on for the final 20
minutes of the game for Steve McManaman.
He has also played on the left-wing under Sven-Göran Eriksson.
He was restored to his forward role for the World Cup qualifier
against Germany in September 2001 and scored the final goal in
England's 5-1 victory in Munich. Though he lost his scoring
touch somwehat during the 2001/02 season, he still managed to
score 14 goals for Liverpool.
One of Eriksson's favourites, he was selected in the squad for
the 2002 World Cup in Japan and Korea, and started in the left-wing
role against Sweden, but looked far more effective when moved
back into the forward line to partner Michael Owen. He netted
against Denmark as England reached the quarter-finals, but many
England fans do not believe he is the best option for England's
attacking line. This is backed up by his strike rate statistic,
the worst of any post-war regular England striker.
Scoring just nine goals in the 2002/03 season - only five in the
Premiership - did not help his cause. However, despite his
critics Heskey continued to be an integral part of the
international squad and took over the captaincy from Michael
Owen when England beat Serbia and Montenegro 2-1 in his hometown
of Leicester in June 2003.
In the 2003/04 season Heskey faced increasing competition from
Milan Baro as Michael Owen's strike partner. Despite this he
scored 7 league goals and secured a place in the England squad
for the Euro 2004 tournament in Portugal.
At the end of the 2003/04 season, Heskey signed for Birmingham
City for £6.25 million, as a replacement for the retiring
Christophe Dugarry, thus becoming Birmingham's most expensive
Despite Birmingham's mediocre 2004/5 season, Heskey is
considered to have been probably the most prominent and
consistent player for the Blues, winning four club awards at the
end of the season - Player's Player of the Season, Fan's Player
of the Season, Top Goalscorer (11) and Most Man of the Match
Heskey has started the 2005/06 in excellent club form and it
still remains a possibility that he will be recalled to the
England squad as the 2006 World Cup approaches as there is still
no alternative player with his skills and attributes.
However since the emergence of Peter Crouch as England's "Plan
B", the possibility of a recall has receded further on the
horizon. Whilst offering pace and power, his dismal
international scoring record of just 5 goals in 43 appearances
coupled with his consistently inconsistent domestic seasonal
tallies do not compare favourably to other strikers in his mould.