England B won their game last night 3-1 against Albania with Stuart Downing scoring two and Alan Smith scored the third.
It’s the first time Owen has played 90 minutes for England for some time – and is another step in his rehabilitation back to full fitness. Michael captained the side.
Both Steven Taylor and Kieron Dyer were introduced for the last quarter of the game – and looked good.
Whether Owen will be at Newcastle come August we still don’t know – and he is not telling anybody as far as we know. Once Mike Ashley comes in – maybe as early as next week – we will need some answers – so Big Sam knows exactly which players he needs to replace in the existing Newcastle squad.
This is what Owen had to say following the England B game last night.
“I’m sure it will come,” “I’ve been out for a year and that’s my fourth game so I was never going to be at my best. But I feel my touch is decent and I feel sharp. Given the chance, I’m confident I’ll score goals. I had one good chance and just put it wide but I feel happy with my night’s work.
The chances will come and I’m sure I’ll always be there to take them. Until the day I retire, I’m sure I’ll always be the same type of player.
I’m an instinct player and I’ll always back my instinct because I tend to know where the ball is going to drop in the box. It’s just a matter of finishing, I’m sure that will come. “Who knows how long it will take? If I get the balls whizzed into the box and score a couple of goals, everyone will say, `Oh, he looks back to his best’.
It’s just a matter of playing and feeling sharper and sharper.”
Steve McClaren was upbeat about Owenâ€™s performance and said:
“It was tremendous,”. “It was his first 90 minutes for England for almost a year. He just needs more games.”
Looks like McClaren is placing a lot of hope that Owen can stir England out of their recent lethargy and get us a good result against Albania on June 6th.
Just to keep everything in perspective here is the current standing of England’s group for the European Championships next year – England should win rather easily against Estonia – who have no points and have scored no goals!
P W D L F A GD PTS Croatia 5 4 1 0 15 4 11 13 Israel 6 3 2 1 13 6 7 11 Russia 5 3 2 0 7 1 6 11 England 6 3 2 1 9 2 7 11 FYR Macedonia 6 2 1 3 5 5 0 7 Estonia 5 0 0 5 0 10 -10 0 Andorra 5 0 0 5 1 22 -21 0
England are ranked number 8 by FIFA and Estonia are ranked number 110.