Belfast Telegraph

Heskey assured of Villa role

Alex McLeish insists veteran striker Emile Heskey still has a major role to play at Aston Villa and that it would be "crazy" not to make use of his vast experience.

Heskey had only a bit-part role to play during the second half of last season following the arrival of club-record signing Darren Bent in January.

But McLeish said: "Emile's experience is phenomenal. He has enormous experience. He has played for England, he has played for several top managers over the years so he has learnt a lot."

He added: "Discarding his kind of knowledge and his skills would be crazy. I have to tap into a guy like that. I have to use him to the full.

"There is no guarantee that Emile will play every week - but he has certainly impressed me."

Heskey regained his spot initially after Gerard Houllier's arrival as manager last season but Bent's £18million capture saw him revert to being a back-up player.

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