Plymouth striker Jake Jervis talks us through his football memories
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.
MULTI-TALENTED: Ronaldo (the Brazilian one)