Allardyce Worried About Oba Martins

Newcastle boss Sam Allardyce has finally admitted that with Michael Owen now showing world class form, he faces a problem in keeping our other small striker, Oba Martins, happy at Newcastle.

Sam seems to favor Michael Owen and Mark Viduka up front as his starting two in a 4-4-2 formation as a 4-3-3 formation hasn’t worked too well given the players Newcastle have available.

It therefore appears there will be only 2 out and out strikers in the side.


Oba Martins – has shown good skills and spirit this season

Martins however has shown good team skills when he came off the bench in the last two games and had a huge impact on each game. Against Barnsley he came on and scored for Newcastle to win comfortably 2-0, and then against Wigan he provided the cross for Owen’s neat header to secure the win.

Allardyce said today:

“There is a difficult situation for me there because Oba is not going to be totally satisfied if he is on the bench too long.”

“I have to manage that situation like I have with all the other squad players who expect to be playing rather than not.

“I hopefully can manage that as well as I possibly can and keep all the players as happy as I can, and then when they do get an opportunity to play, they grasp that opportunity and make life difficult for me to leave them out again.”

Don’t be surprised if Martins starts up front with Viduka if he is fit (Ameobi if he isn’t) on Monday evening at Derby. Michael Owen has played a lot of games in the last couple of weeks and a little rest would not do him any harm at all. We would also expect Oba to be really keen to impress, and Sam can always keep Owen in reserve in case he is needed to get the goals to win the game. We do have 3 games in a week following the game on Monday night so Sam will need to use his full squad for that.

It will certainly be interesting to see which team Sam selects for Monday night.

Comments always welcome.

29 comments so far

  • Lamesley Mag

    Sep 15, 2007 at 10:32 AM

    Comment #1

    Think Martins will start up front against Derby with Viduka (if fit) or Ameobi with Owen on the bench. BSA has already suggested he’s concerned about Owen and fatigue so don’t expect him to be risked from the start, maybe he’ll play the last 20~30 minutes……..

  • Dragoner

    Sep 15, 2007 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #2

    i will be extremely disappointed if Martins starts gettin left out of the squad, because the simple fact of the matter is Owen didn’t have to WORK his way back into the squad like every other member, even though Martins was on form, Owen was still the priority, what the staff need to think about is, who is more likely to be loyal to us in the long term? if Michael Owen performs well and a bigger team comes for him then he wont hesitate to leave us, we might even lose both strikers in the end

  • ToonKing

    Sep 15, 2007 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #3

    @Dragoner: Owen didn’t have to work his way back ??!! o) Come on mate, he worked his way back from a career ending injury and them worked hard to get to the form he is at the moment. If anybody has done hard for to get back to playing top footy and establishing himself as the teams top striker it’s Owen.

  • Dragoner

    Sep 15, 2007 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #4

    im not talking about his injury, im talking bout working his way back into squad at the expense of an in form striker

  • Tom_toon

    Sep 15, 2007 at 11:32 AM

    Comment #5

    TBH Oba and Owen should play together if you look at Obas attributes, mainly speed he is also very strong and good in the air with some deft touches. Hes not to disimilar to Hesky or a target man figure except from his runs.

  • Sinead

    Sep 15, 2007 at 11:52 AM

    Comment #6

    You know Martins has done nothing wrong, he doesn’t deserve to be droped but in reality it doesn’t take a genius to work out who Sam will pick, Owen every time.

  • Callum

    Sep 15, 2007 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #7

    Yeah, Martins is our top scorer this year yet hes been dropped to replace Owen an ENGLAND striker, if Martins was English and Owen Nigerian i bet Martins will start most games

  • Sinead

    Sep 15, 2007 at 1:01 PM

    Comment #8

    Callum..Pretty much ya. It’s unfair on Martins who in my oppinion is better then Owen but that wont matter. That seems to be the way with Harper aswell. If people keep saying that Harper should be in goals for England IF he started more games. If the media keep pushing for it then something tells me that Harper will start more games aswell. It’s not right and it’s not fair on either of the players. People will defend them now saying that both are playing well, blah, blah, but Given is definatley better then Harper and Martins is, in my oppinion and in a lot of neutral (non English) oppinion is that Martins is better. But it wont matter. It’s the politics in English football and it’s a joke.

  • Toon Chicken

    Sep 15, 2007 at 1:15 PM

    Comment #9

    dragoner – Owen didn’t have to work his way into the squad? Did he not play all those games behind closed doors against Gretna and the like before being included in the squad to face Barnsley in the Carling Cup??
    If you want to talk about not working their way into the squad then what about the Fat Aussie? He just waddled straight into the first XI with no complaints from anyone.

  • Jerry

    Sep 15, 2007 at 1:17 PM

    Comment #10

    Dragoner – for once i agree with you!

  • Jerry

    Sep 15, 2007 at 1:18 PM

    Comment #11

    This is just pure racism! If i were Martins I would be putting in a transfer request!

  • Toon Chicken

    Sep 15, 2007 at 1:20 PM

    Comment #12

    Sinead/Callum – there is no conspiracy to pick English players over their foreign counterparts. That is probably the most ridiculous comment I’ve heard on here – have you missed all the stories over the last week about there being hardly any English players in the Premiership now??
    And to suggest that BSA would bow to pressure from the FA or the media to select who they want. Come on – you don’t seriously believe that do you??

  • ChrisL

    Sep 15, 2007 at 1:30 PM

    Comment #13

    Sam will pick the team he thinks most likely to get us a result on the day. Please remember that Owen is the finished article, while Martins has not reached his peak yet & continues to improve.

  • dragoner

    Sep 15, 2007 at 2:40 PM

    Comment #14

    i dont call Gretna and matches behind closed doors good enough to replace a striker who is in top form

  • Rob Kirton

    Sep 15, 2007 at 2:42 PM

    Comment #15

    The real problem we face is that Oba was bought as a direct replacement for Owen when he was crocked. It doesn’t appear it was either Roeders or is Allardyces view to play them together.

    Having said that, I have always thought their games to be different. Oba tends to make thing happen, Owen is more of a goal hanger. If the boss man decides they don’t compliment each other – he should just pick them on form or desired tactics and don’t feel too bad about upseting one or both. Having said that I can’t see both Viduka and Amobi being picked for a 4-4-2 line up :0)

    Nor can I see any particular “pro English” stance from Allardyce, taking into account his buying record, both recent and at Bolton.

  • Sinead

    Sep 15, 2007 at 3:54 PM

    Comment #16

    Toon Chicken..then explain to me why Martins who is better then Owen, and Given who is better then Harper both will sit on the bench??

    Owen didn’t have to work back in to the game all he had to do was show up say he’s fit and back in he goes, fine Martins and Owen are kinda on one level talent wise but Given who is alot better but can’t go straight back in. Right.

    About the conspiarcy theory, are you that nieve?? Come on like, seriously. YOu actually believe that. Ya I have heard the stories and isn’t that the point. HOw can you not believe it, are you English?? Sam prefers Harper he’s pretty much said it and he defiantley prefers Martins. Maybe not buying in the market but the media were and will be now cause Owen scored 2 for England, hype over give Owen more games he needs it he’ll only get better or those whispers about how English keepers are a rare breed and Harper isn’t a complete disaster so if the whispers continue about from the media and such about how Harper should be the English keeper but only if he gets more games, then he’ll get picked everytime, same with Owen and Martins, his excuse well eh Given will have interantional games so we’ll rest him and Owen I’m sure he’ll come up with something.

  • Sinead

    Sep 15, 2007 at 4:19 PM

    Comment #17

    I meant to say he definatley preffers bad.

  • Sinead

    Sep 15, 2007 at 4:21 PM

    Comment #18

    I don’t know what’s going on with my post a load of words and such are missing, it barley makes sense..ok.

  • Hadji

    Sep 15, 2007 at 5:54 PM

    Comment #19

    Andy Cole & Dwight Yorke at Man Utd=Champions league
    Owen & Fowler at Liverpool=Uefa Cup
    Owen & Martins>Owen and Viduka
    BSA why can’t you just play those 2 together for once in your life.But not in the 75th minute i’m talking as starters.
    Thank you

  • JJ

    Sep 15, 2007 at 8:31 PM

    Comment #20

    Completely agree, Martins has the attributes to be a better player than Owen. And like most non-english people. I feel Owen is very overated. That is not to say he is not a great goal scorer. Just not as good a player same the English make him to be. Shearer was a great!!!
    Same with Rooney (completely overated). But hopefully Martins will get a start against Derby, score a brace and make it very very difficult for Big Sam to drop him.
    I have no doubt that Owen or Martins will get injured at some point in the season which is why both should be rotated until they have to play every game. For me Owen will score more goals. BUT in a year or so I would MUCH rather have Martins at the club than Owen… At 29. Anyone differ in opinion?

  • dragoner

    Sep 15, 2007 at 9:25 PM

    Comment #21

    100% agree with everything you said JJ

  • Soren

    Sep 15, 2007 at 9:52 PM

    Comment #22

    Agree with Hadji, Martins and Owen together could be golden. I don’t belive that one must play big n’ little partnership. Why not play the 2 best strikers we have? Martins and Owen.

  • newcastle fan

    Sep 15, 2007 at 9:53 PM

    Comment #23

    i think martins n owen up front rest viduka

  • Ashton

    Sep 15, 2007 at 11:58 PM

    Comment #24

    i just don’t get it why the hell fat viduka is alwase the first choice, it’s not fear to drop oba on the bench while fat viduka is playing weak over weak even if he was injured !!

    england always play with two small man up front
    owen & rooney
    and oba’s styl is pretty much like rooney’s strong and fast etc etc ..

    just give owen and martins a faer chance for god sakes

  • Bendix

    Sep 16, 2007 at 12:11 AM

    Comment #25

    Whatever the merits of Owen and Martins, for your contributor Jerry to suggest that BSA’s choice is based on racism is ludicrous. Just take a look at the ethnic make-up of the rest of the team likely to face Derby and think again … and apologise to Sam …. and try to think of something sensible to write!

  • evil dick

    Sep 16, 2007 at 3:13 AM

    Comment #26

    I don’t see why we can’t play them together, let them start together at least once. Although I do think Owen should come off the bench at deby, martins and viduka should start.

  • Keep Oba

    Sep 16, 2007 at 5:52 AM

    Comment #27

    I dont see why we necessarily neeed one Big striker and one small….didnt they combine for the winning goal verses Wigan…..nothing against Viduka (I bet he chose us because of his Australian Rules Team Collingwood…which are also the Magpies and Black and White)….I would love to see Owen and Oba start the game together…see what they can do…why not? cause they are both small? Well Oba can jump probably higher than Viduka can and he is super fast…lets see them…the future of Newcastle run out together…Remember how well Owen plays with Heskey plays with Owen…well maybe Oba could form that type of connection but with a bit more scoring touch. I wouldnt want to piss off Oba…he is far more valuable (on the field and in transfer) than Viduka…dont let Oba sit the bench…get disillusioned and then some big4 team swoops on him in January for cheap.

  • Elliott

    Sep 16, 2007 at 9:10 PM

    Comment #28

    There’s a lot of rubbish being spouted on here. Racism, Politics, whatever.

    The reason Owen gets picked over Martins is that Owen has a record of taking 2 chances to score. Viduka’s is 2.5 and Martins’ is above 4. Seeing that Sam uses figures like these to pick the team you can understand his thinking.

    Having said this, I’d still like to find a way of playing Owen and Martins. If we were playing better football and keeping the ball better we could but as it stands we’re giving the ball away too much and need an outlet like Viduka.

  • David M

    Sep 17, 2007 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #29

    Well put Elliot. In a nutshell.To attribute BSA’s team selection to ‘racism’ is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard.


You must log in to post a comment.