Sam Allardyce talked to Sky Sports News this morning concerning the Oba Martins affair and basically said that when Oba gets back next week he’ll have a good talk to him to see what his thoughts are on staying at the club. It’s obvious also from his comments that Sam is not pleased with these release clauses in Martins’ and Owen’s contracts – and we can hardly blame him.
On Michael Owen he offered some good news saying that he didn’t think there was any need to speak to Michael – since that was covered months ago. We take that to mean Sam expects Owen at Newcastle for next season – and we think that’s great news.
Sam did shed some common sense on the Oba Martins affair – which was in all the papers this morning – and originated in the Independent. The news being that Wenger is prepared to bid for Martins via the release clause in Martin’s contract. This is what Sam had to say to Sky Sports News this morning:
“All I can say from the club’s point of view and mine is that it is only speculation because we have had no official contact from anybody at Arsenal at the moment. “Everybody knows about the clause situation he has – that leaves us in a very poor position as a football club.
“We are left in a very precarious position regarding that. All the speculation that is flying around is difficult to cope with, but it is something we will have to try to find out over the next few days.”
“When Oba comes back, we will sit down and say, ‘What exactly is the situation?’ and if he has any problems, try to resolve them and hopefully persuade him Newcastle is the place for him next season.”
Well that sounds fine and we would hope that Oba’s statement of last week – that he is happy at Newcastle – is still the case when he returns to the club next week. We also believe Martins could benefit from having a manager like Sam – as other youngsters have done in the past when he was at Bolton. It cannot be easy for a 22 year-old from Africa to arrive in England and immediately settle – and we feel that Sam’s famous back-room staff can ensure whatever problems Martins may have – are taken care of.
Sam is said to have no such plans to sit down with Michael Owen next week and seemed to offer a positive statement on Michael – as he seems confident of keeping the England striker. This is what Sam had to say regarding Michael Owen:
“I don’t think there is any need to speak to Michael – that was all covered weeks and weeks ago, as far as I was concerned.
“There has been no speculation regarding Michael since then. Now it has moved on to Oba and when that sort of clause is inserted in a contract, those are the sort of players that bring up more speculation than everybody else.”
We assume that the last time Sam and Michael spoke Michael must have assured Sam he was staying at the club. That’s a supposition on our part – but the last time we heard from Sam was that he couldn’t do anything to stop Michael leaving if he wanted to. We have to take this as positive news â€“ after all Michael will score a lot of goals for us next season. We are pleased his 14 appearances to date for the club will now rise – and rise significantly over the next few years â€“ along with this goal tally!