“Newcastle fans, following my Football Focus interview, plenty of you tweeting me saying you don’t blame me for getting injured but for leaving when we got relegated.”
“Despite the club saying they did, they didn’t ever offer me a new contract despite them putting it in the press that they did. How could they when they had just been relegated? It would have been financial suicide. I’ve seen it a million times, a club will blatantly lie to their fans to take the moral high ground leaving the player with no leg to stand on. I’ve taken the stick for years which is fine but you really don’t know half of it. All will be revealed one day.”
Tweeted Michael Owen on his final season at Newcastle United. Then however, he backtracked somewhat, updating his Twitter with the following:
“Just to clarify. My tweet yesterday referred to no contract offer after Newcastle relegation. Which I said was understandable. Newcastle did make me an offer to extend in 2008 when Joe Kinnear was manager. Apologies to the club if there has been any confusion. I just didn’t want the fans to think I had deserted the club after relegation. I didn’t.” (more…)
It seems a lifetime since signings like Michael Owen and Mark Viduka wore the black and white. Declining, injury prone and nearly always overpriced; these marquee players from the Shepherd era were one of the main reasons we were relegated at the beginning of Ashley’s reign.
On massive wages and having already achieved something notable in their careers, they didn’t seem like they were hungry enough to care about the current club’s situation enough to save us from the drop. Going down to the championship a few years ago turned out to be the best thing that could have happened to the club in years as we found out who was there for the team and who was just there for the money and prestige.
The new policy of signing hungry players with lower reputations and wage demands started with the signings of players such as Fabricio Coloccini and Jonas Gutierrez, who were the first of many similar players to come through the door with similar ambitions and experience. These were followed in subsequent seasons by the likes of Cheick Tiote, Hatem Ben Arfa and Yohan Cabaye, plus the five recent additions to the squad last month, making this transfer policy clearly the most important reason for our fledgling success in the last three / four seasons. (more…)
Venue: White Hart Lane, Tottenham. Date: Saturday 11th Feb, 2012. Kick-off: 5.30pm. Referee: Andre Marriner.
It would be tempting to think that Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp had been distracted by one or two other things this week whilst preparing his ‘Spurs squad for this weeks game, but that would probably be folly. With the weather and his other “distractions”, ‘Arry couldn’t even make it to Tottenham’s last game against Liverpool away, and they still drew 0-0 against the mighty Reds.
One could also say that the ‘Spurs supremo is having something of a “lucky” week too, up before the beak as a suspected tax evader one minute, and hot favourite as England manager the next. Though some might even think that the could be more damaging in the long run, a perfect way to ruin a glittering career if some of the previous incumbents are anything to go by. Even our own Silver Supremo, Alan Pardew, felt the need to rule himself out for some reason, though one or two of the media have been quick to link him not with the England job, but with a certain managerial position in North London which may or may not be coming up in the near future. But enough of such silliness, let’s get on with the game!
Venue: St James’ Park, Newcastle Date: Saturday, October 22nd, 2011 Kick-off: 3:00pm Referee: Neil Swarbrick.
Roberto Martinez brings his Wigan squad up to Tyneside this Saturday, as Newcastle United will look to continue their undefeated record in all competitions so far this season.
There is no live UK broadcast of the match, but due to the wonders of the internet, you may likely be able to find a link here
Wigan’s form so far this season has been dreadful. They started the season with a 1-1 draw at home to last seasons Championship winners, Norwich City, followed by another share of the spoils against the newly promoted Swansea City. Franco Di Santo helped Wigan record their first victory of the season in their third Premier League match against QPR at the DW Stadium, but after that victory, they went on to suffer four straight defeats. Their most recent encounter was versus another struggling side – Bolton Wanderers, but they suffered yet another defeat, losing 3-1 in front of their own supporter(s). Away from the DW Stadium, Wigan have played four, drew one and lost three. In that process they have scored one, and conceded eight.
As I write this, we sit at the top of the Premier League injury table alongside Spurs and the rabble from down the road and my perception is that we get a lot of injuries compared to other teams.
However, my perception might be clouded by the fact that I support Newcastle, so I set about trying to find some historical stats about injuries and – in the main – failed dismally to do so. I did find a site called LadyArse – a gooners’ fan site – which does contain an injury list that has us 5th, but I can’t vouch for the accuracy of said table.
Another thing that might cloud my perception is that injuries to key players are obviously noticed more than those to squad players, and we seem to have had a lot of those in recent seasons too.
So I guess my first question is: do we get a lot of injuries for a Premier League club? (more…)
Birmingham allegedly want Newcastle’s Leon Best. Dan Gosling and Hatem Ben Arfa gets in some early pre-season training. And Michael Owen seems to have upset a few people.
With all the speculation about who we might be buying, I’d quite forgotten that other teams might want some of our players other than Jose Enrique.
If you believe the Mail (no tittering), freshly relegated Birmingham are after Leon Best to replace Cameron Jerome who Alex McLeish seems resigned to losing. I actually thought Leon Best did a decent job for us last season, getting 6 goals in 12 games, and of all our current strikers he’s the one I’d most like to keep, but I guess it depends on who we bring in over the summer to enhance our goal-scoring capabilities.
How much do you think Best is worth anyway?
Both Dan Gosling and Hatem Ben Arfa have made an early return for pre-season training to ensure that they’re fully fit for next season. (more…)
Michael Owen hints that Newcastle United were a ‘poor team’ when he was playing for them.
Michael Owen, who has recently signed a deal to keep him at Man Utd for another year, has allegedly had a bit of a pop at the Toon. According to Twitty, he said:
“Just to answer some of your tweets. Prefer playing less often in a top team than every game in a poor team. Been there and didn’t enjoy it.
“Training every day at a high standard keeps you performing at a high level. I’m sure I have a lot to offer and so does the boss. Buzzing!”
Unfortunately he’s right – we were indeed a poor team when he was playing for us. Or should I say we were a poor team when he was queueing up outside the treatment room for us.
But despite his factual accuracy, I can’t help but feel there’s some bitterness from Owen about the criticism thrown in his direction from Newcastle fans when he upped sticks and left us relegated without so much as a by your leave. It just seemed like he didn’t care and that rankled. (more…)
Ex Newcastle United striker, Michael Owen, who was a late substitute for Manchester United in yesterday evening’s game against the Magpies, has been giving it both barrels about Newcastle fans on his ‘Twitter’ page, where he humbly refers to himself as ‘the’ Michael Owen, to avoid confusion with a web developing namesake on the ‘micro-blogging’ site.
Owen, who had a disappointing career plagued by injury on Tyneside after being signed by Graeme Souness in August, 2005, complained that his reception was “disappointing”, later claiming that he played well under Kevin Keegan, and that both Newcastle and Liverpool fans “respect” what he’s done for their clubs when he meets them. Amongst other things, fans chanted “There’s only one greedy bastard” as he made his late entry as an 82nd minute substitute in the game.
To be fair, the pint sized assassin did give credit to the Newcastle side for a good performance against the League leaders. In his first post-gane ‘tweet’ he wrote:
“Disappointing result but credit to Newcastle, they played well and put us under plenty of pressure especially in the first half an hour.”
Andy Carroll looks set to start for England tomorrow where he will pick up his first senior international cap against France at Wembley.
Fair play to the lad as he deserves his chance. I just hope he doesn’t pick up an injury that will keep him out of action for his club!
Anyway, I digress. It’s been a pretty meteoric rise to the top for the Gateshead lad. Just twenty months ago he was a was a benchwarmer, a young whipper-snapper with a bad reputation. At 21-years-old, he still is a whipper-snapper, and he remains as controversial now as he was back then, but his stock on the football field has risen rapidly, to the point where he is about to become the next Newcastle player to lead the line for England.
Newcastle have been blessed with English goal-scorers, certainly in recent years anyway, and it’s those years that I am going to cover in this article. I will, of course, be looking for your input on this, which will hopefully lead to a good healthy debate about England forwards that Newcastle have had on their books in years gone by. So, where do we start? (more…)
It’s been a turbulent 12 months for Newcastle United, but after a season in the second tier we can now once again, ahem, look forward to the regular visits of Manchester United, Chelsea and all the rest.
It took some luck, some balls of steel, a bit of skill and many more factors to click into place all at once for us to secure promotion, but in the end it was very much a case of mission accomplished as Newcastle pretty much blew the rest of the Championship away.
Newcastle are back in the big time, back where it can be argued that a club with infrastructure and fanbase we have belongs, and we also have the chance to get back at those players who left us, the ones who got asked to shape up or ship out after that 6-1 pre-season defeat to Leyton Orient last season. That is not to say that I blame them for leaving, not one bit in fact, and I believe that those players leaving was the catalyst behind this new found team spirit that we keep hearing about. Having said that, it’s still always nice to get one over on your old colleagues, even Jose Enrique admitted recently he would be itching to do just that. So with that in mind, just what have they been up to whilst Newcastle have been away? Do we have anything to worry about from our former players? (more…)