WIGAN ATHLETIC mascot Crusty the Pie is certainly enjoying the 'pie' life at the moment.
The baked treat made its Lactics debut against Cardiff City back in August, sharing a 'pie' five with Bluebirds boss Neil Warnock.
Since then, Crusty has become the darling of the DW Stadium – receiving love from fans from all over the world.
SunSport spoke EXCLUSIVELY to Crusty, who gave us his filling… well, sort of.
First and foremost, delighted to meet you Crusty.
Peter asked me, ‘What’s my filling?’ – it is a bit personal so I prefer not to say!"
You had quite the unveiling. The legendary Peter Reid introduced you to the world on Sky Sports.
What was that like? Did Reidy give you any advice?
Did he tell you he liked pies? Did he have a favourite? Were you concerned he might chomp on you, given he was tough-as-nails as a player?
Peter asked me, ‘What’s my filling?’ – it is a bit personal so I prefer not to say!
I think he said he liked meat and potato, but the main thing about the day was celebrating my ‘designers’ Neve and Cayden, who won a competition to create me! What a great idea – I now have a job for life!
I got a ‘pie’ five off Neil Warnock, which was good and the Cardiff City fans were really friendly."
Talk us through your debut at the DW Stadium against Cardiff City… how did it feel walking out in front of the home fans? Did you hear them chanting your name? Were you nervous? After all, if you slipped over in the kickabout you would've had pie all over your face…
(LAUGHS) Very good! I loved walking out at the DW Stadium for the first time, although I was rather nervous.
Getting such a warm welcome from everyone, including Cardiff was a huge relief. And what a game! A 3-2 win!
I got a ‘pie’ five off Neil Warnock, which was good and the Cardiff City fans were really friendly.
I was in the Wigan Athletic Family Zone before the game and so many people wanted a photo with me. I didn’t realise how popular I was after my appearance on Sky Sports.
A pies' worst fear must be being thrown,. But if the team are successful, instead of throwing manager Paul Cook in the air is there a possibility the players will launch you towards the sky?
If the team win promotion to the Premier League then they can throw me up in the air, no problem.
Otherwise, I’d prefer to keep my base firmly on the ground.
Away fans can be cheeky. What's the worst that's been aimed at you from the stands?
Oh I haven’t had that yet. The fans of Cardiff City, Leeds United and Barnsley have been great. They all want photos with me. All I have had to do is perfect my smile.
How have the players been? Who's given you the warmest reception? Anyone you're slightly frightened of? Did you have to sing an initiation song when you were welcomed to the club?
There was no initiation song!
The players have been lovely, as has Paul Cook – the manager. I get a ‘pie’ five off the players as they warm up and walk out.
But I need to join in on a goal celebration soon though!
I have loved it, and I am enjoying my fame while it lasts."
Since you were launched (forgive the pun) you've won fans from all over the globe… tell us about the messages you've received.
It has been incredible. I have had messages from all over the world.
The club are now getting a Crusty The Pie clothing range and toys because it has been so popular.
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I have loved it, and I am enjoying my fame while it lasts. I just wish I could meet every one of my fans and have my picture with them all, there just aren't enough hours in a day.
Which mascot are you most looking forward to meeting this season and why? There's Boiler Man in your division, you could also meet Fleetwood Town's Captain Cod if you draw them in the Cup.
I love meeting all of the mascots.
We play Derby County on Boxing Day and the club are doing a special offer for the match to make tickets really cheap.
I think I am playing a penalty shootout game on the pitch at half-time against Rammie and Ewie from Derby – that should be fun.
As part of your on-pitch duties, you're asked to showcase your football skills. How are they? Is there a special league you played in for pies?
I have been given the ‘Custard Pie’ by Paul Cook! I haven’t done enough to get a place in the starting XI just yet.
My movement is limited, but I think I can get my penalties ready for Boxing Day.
I'm pretty quick in the net already, so they'd better be sure to bring their A game if they want to get past me.
Admittedly, I haven't quite perfected the art of kick-ups yet, but practice will make perfect.
A lot of mascots love to dance… any moves you've got that'll have the home fans in raptures?
Hmm a dance off… I might have to think about that in the future. I’ll get my football skills perfected first and then move on to a mascot dance off.
Maybe somebody could create that event? I already do love to throw some shapes, especially when "I'm a Believer" comes on, that's my favourite!
And the crowd seem to love my moves too, so even better.
Finally, can Crusty leave a legacy at Wigan akin to players like Andy Liddell and Jimmy Bullard? What would you want written on your gravestone?
I have only just been born, I don’t want to think about dying! Long live Crusty The Pie!
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