Heskey looks for best from Rooney

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Emile Heskey is hoping he can help to bring the best out of strike partner Wayne Rooney in England's two World Cup qualifiers with Kazakhstan and Belarus.

Heskey proved the perfect foil for the currently out of favour Michael Owen when the pair were reunited for last season's Euro 2008 qualifiers with Israel and Russia at Wembley. And the signs were encouraging when the 30-year-old played alongside Rooney in England's stunning 4-1 win over Croatia in Zagreb last month.

Heskey, who has recovered from a back problem which had hindered his training, said: "You never know until you actually play with someone what the partnership is going to be like but Wayne is a fantastic player."

He added: "He's shown that over the years but it's only when you start playing with someone that you get a little understanding, knowing where he's going to run, where you need to be.

"You kind of build your game around your partner.

"I am hoping I am helping to get the best out of him. He's a fantastic talent so I hope I am getting the best out of him."

Heskey admitted: "It was different to the partnership with Michael in the sense that I'd played with him right from England Under-18s and Under-21s whereas with Wayne it was a new thing.

"You never know how it's going to pan out but Wayne is such an intelligent player and it's worked out quite well."

Heskey has earned a recall after impressing for Wigan and Fabio Capello has made it clear that reputations count for nothing when he comes to selecting his side.

He said: "Mr Capello is a very strong manager. Names don't really mean much to him. He will say 'this player might not be suited for this game, this person will do a better job than this person, he's got to step down'. He doesn't mind that. It's all about form rather than reputation with him."

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Emile Heskey
Michael Owen
Wayne Rooney
Wigan Athletic

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