First Team 11/07/2018

My Footballing Hero: Troy Deeney

With England in action in the semi-finals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, delved through the archives to find out which English striker Troy Deeney admires.

“I never really had a footballing hero when I was younger – I didn’t sit around too much and watch football – but the older you get, you start hearing certain names.

“I remember watching Ian Wright on ‘This Is Your Life’,” Deeney said. “The programme with the big red book. I watched it when I was about 13 or 14 and I remember thinking not only does he play football, but he’s similar to people around my area in terms of his background story.

“He was a hell of a finisher and I’m fortunate that I can call him a friend now. I can pick up the phone and I know he’ll answer. We don’t necessarily talk about footballing tips, more life skills. I never had an older figure to talk to, but he’s obviously been in the industry and he knows what it’s all about.

Ian Wright attended the Troy Deeney Foundation Golf Day in 2017

“He speaks well and we’re similar in terms of personality. We’re both opinionated and we’re not too scared to say what we think.” he told the club's matchday programme.

England face Croatia in the semi-finals tonight at 7pm.

First Team 09/07/2018

My Footballing Hero: Will Hughes

With England flying high at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, delved through the archives to find out which English midfield man Will Hughes grew up idolising.

“Growing up my hero was always Steven Gerrard,” Hughes told the club's matchday programme. “From a young age I remember watching him at Liverpool.

“On and off-the-pitch he was a big character and he was one of those rare players that had everything.”

Hughes said: “The way he carried himself and others made him an inspirational leader and he always wanted to win. He had everything.

“I never got to play against him unfortunately. We did come up against Liverpool in the cup at Derby, but he’d already retired.”

England face Croatia in the semi-finals on Wednesday July 11 at 7pm.