Chris Mort, the Newcastle United Chairman says the club are proud to have one of their own players, Michael Owen, leading the line for England.
While Sam Allardyce has urged the England manager Steve McClaren to be cautious with Owen, who had two groin operations late last month, the Newcastle chairman is more supportive.
But Sam has insisted there is absolutely no rift with the Newcastle striker, as the gossip papers are only too willing to manufacture.
Chris Mort – proud that Newcastle have Michael Owen playing for England
Chairman Chris Mort set the record straight on Owen as far as the club are concerned. He told the Shields Gazette today:
“It’s disappointing, because the reality is that Newcastle United are delighted that England regard Michael so highly.â€
“It’s quite right that they should, because he is clearly a tremendous striker for his country, as well as for Newcastle United.â€
“I appreciate that the pinnacle of every great player’s career is not just representing their club in every way they can, but also representing their country.â€
“And I wouldn’t want to hold any player back in their desires to play for their country.â€
“Michael is a prized asset to this club and we want to look after him, but we appreciate that he wants to represent his country as well.”
As far as the buy-out clause in Michaelâ€™s contract is concerned, Chris also set the record straight on that, and the fact that it can no longer be activated in his contract. Mort added:
“There was a clause in Michael’s contract which allowed him to leave for a certain fee in the last transfer window and the summer before that, but that sort of clause doesn’t exist any more.”
London based Lawyer Mort, is still settling into his new role, having been brought in by new owner Mike Ashley to run Newcastle after this summer’s successful takeover. We wonder if this is a long term role for Chris, since his wife and children are still based in North London. We hope so, because we think heâ€™s been just outstanding in putting a professional business face on the club.
“Running a football club’s a unique business, particularly with the profile they have within the community.”
“There aren’t too many businesses that have 50,000 people coming in on a Saturday afternoon, get as much Press coverage as we do and also get so close to people’s hearts.”
“If you can imagine any other business, they would die to be as close to people’s hearts as a football club like this. It’s a very special business.”
It sure is a special business, and once Sam gets those additional players into the club in January, we can then push on for a top 6 finish this season. Then the stage will be set during next summer, to bring in some world-class players to the club, so we can really push on and challenge for the top 4 next season. Then the club will get even closer to people’s hearts – at least the Newcastle supporters’ hearts. 😀