Sam Allardyce talked at a little length today on the situation of Michael Owen.
Sam has managed many big name internationals and it seems Michael is no different, as far as the big man is concerned.
As usual Sam wants to get to the bottom of Owenâ€™s injury problems, get them fixed as best as he (and his staff) can do, and then get Michael playing regularly at Newcastle.
Sam Allardyce – job is to get Michael fit and available for regular selection at Newcastle
Thatâ€™s a scenario that Michael no doubt also wants and we all know Michael has suffered cruel luck with injuries during his time at St. James’ Park, through no fault of his own, other than perhaps he wants to play too much.
However, as we have pointed out, even with games only now and again at the club, his goals-to-games ratio remains highly impressive at Newcastle with 10 goals in 21 appearances. Everybody would be much happier if that statistic was now 50 goals in 100 appearances.
And making sure Owen is available for selection on a very regular basis is certainly the priority for Big Sam and for the club.
Sam told nufc.co.uk today:
“I’d like to see him fit for the next 20 games on the trot or more and then enter into a new contract,” “The most important thing is that he’s available for selection every week and we can control it.
“Whether that means we lose him at the end of the day or not is non-negotiable because if it happens it happens but we want to see him fit, playing and scoring on a regular basis.’
“It’s clear before I got here in the summer that the clause of Â£9m was made public, but it never happened and now it’s about keeping Michael fit for what’s going to be a really tough December for us.â€
“If Michael is fit and scoring goals every week, all managers would want him in their side.”
“He’s had 11 years at the top level in a long and illustrious career. In between that are spasmodic phases of injuries he seemed to pick up from an early age.â€
“The hamstring one persisted and now other problems have arisen. That’s wear and tear of a top-grade footballer now who plays too much because of the demands on him.â€
“If you demand that much money then people demand that many games, so it’s a vicious circle.â€ “Michael’s been an England international since 17 and he’s barely had a rest in any summer over the last 11 years.
“However, we don’t think, if we manage the situation right, he’ll pick up as many injuries if we can get a prevention schedule into him.”
We expect Michael to start alongside Wayne Rooney in Moscow tonight for the crucial England Russia European qualifying game. We don’t expect him to play the full 90 minutes but we are still hoping for an England win. An Owen goal would be good too, but the main thing for Newcastle fans is that Michael comes out of the game still fit and healthy. We have a vital game on Monday night against Tottenham and need all our players available, if we are to get the win we need.