Entertainment, Sports

Sylvester Jasper picking brains of Hibs boss Shaun Maloney to learn from Belgium superstars

SYLVESTER Jasper has revealed he is picking the brains of Shaun Maloney on a daily basis in a bid to learn from Belgium’s superstars.

The Fulham winger joined Hibs on loan late on transfer-deadline day and admits Maloney’s experience as Belgium number two was key.

The 20-year-old is desperate to reach the top in football and would love to follow in the footsteps of best pal Fabio Carvalho, who came within a whisker of joining Liverpool last month and is expected to complete the move this summer.

And he reckons manager Maloney can help inspire him by passing on titbits of information gleaned from working with the likes of Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku and Dries Mertens.

He said: “I stay with the manager after training and I have talks with him almost daily about how I can improve.

“And I ask him about these players he worked with at Belgium – what he’s learned from them that he can teach me.

“These are the things that I can bring into my game and hopefully help me become a better player.

“The coach you’re playing under is really important as a player.

“You need to know if you’re going to fit into his system and how you’re going to play for the team.

“And also what you can learn from the coach because, at the end of the day, I’ve only just turned 20 and I’m a young player. I’ve got a lot of learning to do.

“It’s very important he’s learned from these players and been in these places that he can teach me.”

Born in London to a Nigerian dad and Bulgarian mum, Jasper has two caps for Bulgaria at under-21 level and hopes Hibs can help him further his international ambitions – whoever he plays for.

He added: “Right now, if everything goes well in club football then everything else will follow – in terms of contracts and international football, etcetera.

“I just need to focus on getting the club form right and then hopefully I can continue playing internationally and then play first-team internationally.

“I can play for three countries – for England, my dad is Nigerian and my mum is Bulgarian.

“It would be a big decision to make. But if the call comes, it comes and I’ll be ready.”

Meanwhile, Maloney has urged Hibs to show the same determination against Ross County that got them through their tricky Scottish Cup tie against Arbroath last weekend.

Seeking a first league win in seven matches, he said: “For the players, just to get a win and in the way that we did, it certainly gave us more confidence. 

“But we have to start again Saturday.

“What I loved against Arbroath was that we showed a real desire not to get beat, and a desire to match the fight that Arbroath had. 

“That has to be the basis of what we do this weekend and then after that we can play.”

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