Owen Could Be Back for Wigan

It looks like there is chance that Michael Owen may be included in the squad for todays game at the JJB stadium against Wigan Athletic, at least as a substitute.


Michael Owen – could be a substitute today

Sam told the Newcastle Journal today:

“Michael’s fit again and I hope that’s the end of it for a long time,”

Well, it’s certainly amen to that otherwise Michael’s time at Newcastle will go down as one of the most affected by injury ever since in 28 months at the club he has started 21 games, appeared in 25 and scored just 10 goals for the club in that time.

Also the treatment room at Newcastle is now starting to look sparse which has to be good news for Newcastle United’s manager, for a change. Sam continued:

“From here we’ve got more players available for selection than we’ve had all season and that’s important for the four games that are coming up against Wigan, Chelsea, Manchester City and Stoke over the next 12 days.”

“If Michael needs to be used, we’ll consider using him, even if he is short of match practice,” “He’s fit and it might be that he makes a contribution (this Christmas).”

“It could be small contribution but when you have a goalscorer like Michael, it could be crucial. Using him sparingly, that’s something we’re considering. He’s back in the fold again, and that’s great for us all.”

The timing could not be better for a manager seeking to sharpen up our attacking options today but such are Owen’s injury problems, undue risks just cannot be taken with the England striker.

“You have to remember that Michael has been out for several weeks and has had no match practice,”

“Damien had two games behind closed doors before playing at the weekend and I felt the time was right for him to come on and make a contribution. But given our schedule, we’ve had no chance to put a game on for Michael, to let him taste an 11 versus 11 match again.”

“Like Damien, Michael has worked so hard to get himself back in the squad. From here on it’s about getting him back in contention as soon as possible, maintaining his core strength and ensuring he’s available to us on a regular basis.”

It remains to be seen whether Owen is included at the JJB Stadium this afternoon, although a place amongst the Newcastle substitutes is probably the best he can hope for. Given all he has encountered in recent times, such a role would still represent significant progress for Michael.

“It’s a challenge, it always is, but it isn’t as though Michael is still suffering the injuries that he has had in the past – major ones, long-term ones,”

“The recent injuries have been small niggles and Michael has been as disappointed as us all. Preventing injuries is something I’m big on.”

“But it doesn’t happen overnight, it’s a process that can be slow, I’ve always said that. It’s always a concern to have players getting injured on a regular basis. It’s up to us to avoid that situation and I feel we’re making progress.”

The very best we can hope for from Michael today is a place on the bench and then brought on for the last 15 minutes or so. And then Michael scores a goal for us – that’s the very best scenario, and we hope it happens.

But most of all we are hoping and praying that we can get back on the winning track with all 3 points. Wigan is a team we should be able to beat, and that’s the truth.

Comments always welcome.

7 comments so far

  • Jinal

    Dec 26, 2007 at 9:31 AM

    Comment #1

    I hope Mickey gets a part in today’s game. And if he does, so long as there is service, he’ll score!

    I’m really praying the lads put in a good performance today because a win and another shit performance is just delaying the inevitable.


  • Graham

    Dec 26, 2007 at 9:53 AM

    Comment #2

    Owen will noy work in a 433 formation…

    1. He wont play in the middle of the 3 because the balls we play come in snow capped and Michaels only 4’6 in his lasses stileto’s

    2. he cant play on the left or the right as he doesnt hve the strength or pace to beat plaers like he did 5 years ago and is wasted as a winger.

    if owen comes in (and this applies to martins as well) we need to evert to a 442 with our 2 wide men not moving more than 5 yards infield

  • adam

    Dec 26, 2007 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #3

    i agree graham. what owen needs is a run of games so he can get sharp and playing well. while oba is gone at the african cup of nations it could be his chance.
    BUT we’ve said this before and he’ll probly get injured again in a warm up, resulting in him needing to go to germany to see some expert who will tell us he’ll need to rest and will be back in 4 weeks

  • scott 9

    Dec 26, 2007 at 12:23 PM

    Comment #4

    i agree graham owen will not play in a 4 3 3 thats why when he gets abck big sam will change to a 4 4 2 in my opinion

  • Graeme

    Dec 26, 2007 at 12:24 PM

    Comment #5

    After the last fiasco, if Owen plays, it will be either as a right back or between the sticks. God forbid that BSA would actually play a striker in the front two.

    If we scrape a draw, its about all I could hope for I guess. One very disallusioned overseas geordie. One can only hope.

  • Eve

    Dec 26, 2007 at 1:36 PM

    Comment #6

    What Owen needs is a new knee.
    Owen is not and has not been for a long time the same on form Owen of Liverpool all those years ago. He sat on the bench with Real, he then came to play here..and when I say play what I really mean is come and get treatment for his bandy knee. He then becomes fit-ish, is put straight back in to the first team at the expense of players on better form. He plays a couple games, and then he gets injured again. And at the end of the day, when he does play, he doesn’t create anything himself, he lives off scraps from others work and if he’s lucky, he converts them.

    Now I like him, I do, but who are we trying to kid here, his form is gone, he’s damaged goods. He’d almost be better off going out and wearing a big sign saying FRAGILE, handle with care.
    He’s a big name, but that’s all he is, a name. It comes to a point where that isn’t good enough.

  • Leo

    Dec 26, 2007 at 2:46 PM

    Comment #7

    any sopcast links?


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