foot­ball firsts

Ply­mouth striker Jake Jervis talks us through his foot­ball mem­o­ries

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE RESULTS -

First game you watched live? I was born in Wolver­hamp­ton and lived about 15 min­utes away from the Wolves ground. My first game would have been there, when I was about five, but I can’t re­mem­ber ex­actly which one. I was a Wolves fan when I was younger, but then I started to be a bit of a glory hunter and sup­ported Manch­ester United! One game I par­tic­u­larly re­mem­ber watch­ing was the World Cup ‘98 fi­nal be­tween Brazil and France. Ob­vi­ously I wasn’t there, but that was bril­liant. First foot­ball hero? Ron­aldo – R9. He had great pace, scored goals and he could do ev­ery­thing. I wasn’t al­ways try­ing to em­u­late him, though. I was a cen­tre-back when I was younger. Me and an­other boy called Jake played at the back to­gether for our club, Daw­ley Wan­der­ers. We were ex­actly the same, apart from he was white and I was black! It wasn’t un­til I went to Wolves that I moved into mid­field and then up front. First pair of boots? I still have them! They are Adidas Preda­tors, blue with the red stripes, and they are at my mum Ma­ri­ette’s house. She keeps all those sorts of things. She has signed shirts from when I played for Wolves in the Youth Club Cup in Ja­pan for the U12s and other stuff like that. First kit? I think it was a Wolves one, but I also had that white-and-blue Manch­ester United away kit. I didn’t tend to get the names and num­bers on the back, or maybe I wasn’t al­lowed them – it cost too much! Later on, I got an AC Mi­lan shirt and a Real Madrid one. All kinds re­ally, whichever teams my favourite play­ers played for. First pro­fes­sional game? Away to Ever­ton, for Birm­ing­ham. We won 2-1 and James McFadden and Chris­tian Ben­itez got the goals. I came on for Ben­itez with 11 min­utes to go and we saw out the re­sult. When you come from play­ing in the U18s and U21s to play in front of a crowd against play­ers like Steven Pien­aar and Syl­vain Dis­tin, it’s a bit dif­fer­ent. First pro­fes­sional goal? Not long af­ter my de­but, I went on loan to Here­ford. I joined on the Fri­day and was on the bench against Brad­ford the next day. I came on and man­aged to get a goal, then al­most got an­other. I re­mem­ber the goal well. The ball got flicked on and, from the cor­ner of the box, I just knocked it over the top of the keeper. First red card? I have never been sent off in a pro­fes­sional match, but I once got a red card for Birm­ing­ham Re­serves in the Se­nior Cup. That red card car­ried for­ward and I had to miss the last game of the sea­son, when we were go­ing to Spurs. I didn’t know un­til the last minute, which was frus­trat­ing but th­ese things hap­pen.

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Im­ages

MULTI-TAL­ENTED: Ron­aldo (the Brazil­ian one)

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