Emile Heskey will miss Newcastle Jets' opening fixtures of the new A-League season after sustaining an injury in pre-season.
The former England international suffered knee ligament damage following a tackle from Melbourne Victory's Nick Ansell.
The striker - who spent his fair share of time injured whilst in England - will miss his sides first game of the season against Sydney FC, and the injury has left the forward frustrated:
"It is a difficult time right now," said Heskey to news.com.au. "But you have to get through it and come back stronger.
"You always want a a good pre-season, and it was nice to be training for a long time with the lads instead of turning up at the last minute like last year."
However disappointed Heskey may be, he is determined not to rush his injury.
"With an injury like this you can't rush it, you have to make sure it heals properly," he continued. "It is getting stronger and I'm able to do the majority of stuff the other lads are, it's just moving laterally I can't."
One advantage for the targetman is he will be able to analyse his young teammates whilst in the stands.
62-cap Heskey knows a thing or two about top-class talent, and he is hoping his inexperienced colleagues can step up with an extra season's experience:
"Now they have that experience, it's time for them to step up and produce the performances that we know they can," the former England striker added.
"You will have ups and downs, but they've come through that and gone on to play for their national team at U20 level and even Socceroo level in the past few months."
Heskey himself will be looking to build on his first season in Australia, where he bagged nine goals in 23 appearances.
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