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Last Updated: Monday, 24 September 2007, 09:10 GMT 10:10 UK
Bent targets revival at Wigan
By Stuart Roach

Marcus Bent with Wigan team-mate Kevin Kilbane
Striker Bent celebrates his first goal for Wigan

Marcus Bent is determined to finally make his mark as a Premier League striker and step out of the shadow of his 'little brother' after opening his goals account for Wigan.

The former Everton and Ipswich striker is with his 10th club at the age of 29 and celebrated his maiden Latics start with his first goal for the club on Saturday, only to see his side beaten 2-1 at Reading.

But the goal still proved something of a starting point for Bent, who has the opportunity to take advantage of team-mate Emile Heskey's ill-timed injury absence - and to finally dispel any misconceptions that he and Tottenham striker Darren Bent are brothers.

The pair were together at Ipswich early in their careers and again at Charlton last season, where they failed to keep the Addicks in the top flight.

And, while Darren, 23, was making a 16m move to Spurs in the summer, Marcus was on the move again to Wigan in a season-long loan deal from The Valley.

I haven't looked at Emile and said 'ha ha, I've got my place and I hope you stay out for the rest of the season'

Wigan striker Marcus Bent

But, if he feels like the poor relation, then Marcus doesn't show it.

"Let me put the record straight: mine and Darren's families are from the same place in Jamaica and that's the only connection," insisted the elder Bent.

"Whether we're connected, I don't know, but we are close friends and we look out for each other's career.

"He might have gone to Tottenham, I might have gone to Wigan; he might have gone for 16m but I just wish him all the best.

"I know he's going to go on and play for England and score lots of goals. I'm just trying to get my own career back on track."

And if that means stepping out of the shadows of a future England striker and into the shoes of a current one, then Wigan's Bent knows it is an opportunity he has to make the most of.

The Latics were dealt a blow last week when Heskey underwent foot surgery after breaking a metatarsal bone.

However, Bent believes he can prove to be a perfect replacement in the top flight, while his team-mate is on the sidelines.

He added: "I know I can play in the Premier League and score goals. Hopefully, it started on Saturday and I can go on to prove it.

606: DEBATE

"Emile's a quality striker, an England striker, and should be playing for England every time there is an international game.

"But I've not come in and taken his place - I just want to prove that I deserve a place in the team.

"It's unfortunate Emile got an injury and I got my chance - I didn't want it to happen like that.

"And I haven't looked at him and said 'ha ha, I've got my place and I hope you stay out for the rest of the season'.

"I want him to come back quicker than six weeks; there's an international coming up and I want him to be involved in that.

"But listen, I've got belief in my own ability and my own career.

"I want to be playing every week but I want to be playing for all the right reasons. I want to score goals and work hard for the team."



SEE ALSO
Reading 2-1 Wigan
22 Sep 07 |  Premier League
Heskey has surgery on broken foot
17 Sep 07 |  Wigan Athletic
Wigan 1-1 Fulham
15 Sep 07 |  Premier League
Marcus Bent joins Wigan on loan
31 Aug 07 |  Wigan Athletic


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