As Darren Bent launches ‘Fly Your Own Flag’ with New Era, EPL Talk sits down to talk: football, fashion and free time. The relaxed Villa striker has hooked up with New Era and seems extremely proud of his new links with one of the preeminent brands in hip hop culture.
It’s offseason now, what is your favourite part of the time away from football?
Being away from football gives me time to relax, chill with friends and get some holidays in. I love the chance to travel and take in different countries during the offseason.
Which 3 words describe your mentality and why?
Dedication – to be the best I can be.
Determination – in everything I do.
Perseverance – working hard reaps results.
Euros coming up. Which teams/players are you looking forward to watching? Predictions?
My heart says England will win it, but if not I fancy Germany to do well. Thomas Muller from Germany is a big game player with real ability. Obviously Cristiano Ronaldo has a massive role to play for Portugal. From an English perspective, I am looking forward to seeing how Danny Welbeck fares. He has come on a lot this season and he has a chance to impress now on a massive stage.
With a new manager coming in at Villa, what is it like to transition into a new management regime and how do you try to make that easier?
At a club like Aston Villa, everybody is gunning for the same thing- to have success on the pitch so with a manager on board who shares that mentality then it is an easy transition. You have to respect that a new manager may have his own way of doing things and it is up to the players on board to adapt to that.
You’re an NBA fan, is there anything that you’ve learnt from american sports that you try to bring to your game?
The American commitment to excellence is something that shines through across the major sports and this is something I look to incorporate into my training regime and performance on the pitch.
If you could design your own boot what would you add/what colours would you go for?
I’d have to base it on the Umbro Speciali boot which is the most comfortable boot I have ever worn. Comfort is a major factor for me. Colour-wise I’d look to push the boundaries and go for something maybe yellow/green or similar to make an impact.
What does it mean to you to represent New Era?
It means everything to me, to be representing a brand I have loved from a very young age. I have been wearing the brand for years and it’s the perfect fit for me. I try to embody exactly what the brand is about.
Why do you think you are such a good cross over for New Era?
I genuinely love New Era baseball caps and all the brand represents, and have done since I was a kid. I love the Fly Your Own Flag campaign as I too believe you need to be the best you can be, be proud of who you are, focus on your own game and on your own goals and do the very best you can to achieve your dreams. I love what I do, everyone should aim to live their passion.
Who do you think rocks the cap best (apart from yourself)?
For me, it has to be Jay Z.
What’s the best look to wear with a cap?
I’d go for a casual look with jeans and trainers. Everyone has their own style to wear with a baseball cap but I have to say casual is the best fit for me.
Who else on the New Era roster do you look up to?
Wow all of them, they are all so talented and such incredible achievers in their respective fields. From Emmanual Callender an amazing sprinter, Ezekiel Lau a brilliant surfer, and DJ Irie.
If you could design a cap what would you have on it?
My baseball cap would have the Cleveland Cavaliers logo on it and it would be black and leather. Jay Z was wearing a black leather baseball cap at his Watch The Throne concert and it looked amazing.
Blackberry or iPhone man (favourite app)?
I’m an iPhone man and my favourite apps are the Sky Sports app and the ESPN Sports Center app.
Is there anyone you base your style on?
I like to take different influences and infuse them around my style. I like the way Jay Z and Kanye West dress so I would say they influence my style, but it is not solely based on them. I think you mix different influences and have success.
Best dressed players?
David Beckham is the best dressed player for me. And I like the way the Italian squad are dressed with their big-name labels like Hugo Boss and D&G. They look sharp.