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Shearer insists Villa striker Heskey must go to World Cup

England legend Alan Shearer says Aston Villa striker Emile Heskey must go to the World Cup.

Shearer thinks Heskey is the perfect foil for Manchester United star Wayne Rooney because of his all-round ability up front.

He said: "I think Emile will be Capello's choice because the Rooney/Heskey pairing was so successful in qualifying.

"I would agree with that selection, too, although there will inevitably be a lot of debate about Emile's involvement.

"He has not chalked up many goals or games this season but people did not question him when England won all but one of their 10 games in qualifying and scored 33 goals in the process.

"Emile is not a thoroughbred goalscorer but he never has been and never will be.

"That might sound like a strange thing to say about a striker, but he brings other qualities to the team that are not easily replicated by the other contenders.

"At times, Peter [Crouch] cannot do what Emile does for the team, although he has a very good goalscoring record for England with 20 goals in just 37 appearances.

"Jermaine [Defoe] is also a proven goalscorer, but I'm not sure he will start alongside Rooney.

"Emile brings strength and a focal point to the England team. Players can pass to him to relieve pressure, knowing that he will hold the ball up and bring others into the game. That is not to be underestimated when you are trying to maintain possession."

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Tribal Football Staff

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