Oba Wears Heart on Sleeve – Just Like Kevin

Newcastle manager Kevin Keegan says that he has no problem with Oba Martins’ reaction to being substituted at Birmingham City on Monday night.


Oba Martins do you think he’s just scored? 😀

Oba was clearly disappointed and frustrated at being replaced, with just 9 minutes of normal time to play in the game. He didn’t try to hide that.

Keegan understands that his players will not be happy when they are replaced in a game, especially with the passion the game had in the second half.

Kevin said after the game:

“A few of you probably noticed that Oba was a little disappointed to come off.”

“I’ve got no problem with that. In fact, the last thing I wanted to see is players doing cart wheels and somersaults when they come off.”

“I just thought that we needed an extra man in midfield for the last ten minutes or so and I explained that to Oba.” “But Oba has done a great job tonight and it was his persistence which helped create Michael Owen’s goal.”

“To be honest, I’m not too bothered that it’s Oba because I’m the same size as him! ” “If it had been Mark Viduka then I would have been worried because he’s a big lad!” 😀

Oba Martins put in a spirited show and you know with Oba a goal can come at any time. Kevin just needs to keep playing him, and he’ll deliver the goods.

But we think Oba was disappointed because he so wanted to score the winning goal last night. But Oba’s a good lad, and that’s why the Newcastle fans just love the Nigerian boy, he wears his heart on his sleeve, and he works his socks off for the team.

And we’re glad Kevin pointed out that Oba did a great job last night – and he looked just a little menacing with Michael Owen.

Comments welcome.

24 comments so far

  • Leo Kompany for the Toon

    Mar 18, 2008 at 1:12 AM

    Comment #1

    yay… as the girlies will say. at least from now on no need to play smith…

    surely so…

    strike partnership of one of the two-

    martins owen viduka


  • will

    Mar 18, 2008 at 1:21 AM

    Comment #2

    owen should have gone off. oba set u his goal single handedly. we ad little threat when he went off.

  • adam

    Mar 18, 2008 at 1:23 AM

    Comment #3

    martins is a class player. with coaching and better players setting him up he will be even better for us. and hes only 23

  • Bobby Ollox

    Mar 18, 2008 at 1:35 AM

    Comment #4

    You remember how Keegan took a real shine to Robert Lee first time round, and Bobby Robson the same with Jenas – cos they were players in the same mould as themselves when they were younger. ….
    I wonder who Keegan sees like that in the current team – his special player – the one he will go out on a limb for – I havent seen him do that for anyone in the team. I think we have yet to see him unearth his gem – Somebody from the reserves ? or someone still to be bought

    god just thinking about Keegans first team at Newcastle gives me goosebumps I hope he can do that half as well again, but judging from tonight , there is a hell of a long way to go…

  • geordie_jordan

    Mar 18, 2008 at 1:42 AM

    Comment #5

    my ratings for the match:
    harper- 7, not troubled really
    beye- 6, solid, if unspectacular
    taylor- 5, a bit shaky
    faye- 4, more than a bit shaky
    enrique- 7, lively
    geremi- 5, just terrible delivery from set pieces, but other than that his best match for us
    butt- 8, THAT is how you play dm
    barton- 5, showed spirit but not much else
    owen- 6, always lurking, but i’m still not sold he’s back to his old goal scoring ways
    martins- 8, my MOM, very dangerous
    viduka- 6, had his moments, but must get the ball played into his feet…

  • obamagic

    Mar 18, 2008 at 1:49 AM

    Comment #6

    this guy is pure magic!!!

  • ObaFan2

    Mar 18, 2008 at 1:58 AM

    Comment #7

    Oba was great last season but has never really been given many chances this season (mainly due to our long departed manager).

    It is good to see he is still up for it and every fan should appretiate him and I hope that(as Bobby Ollox ask) KK realises he could be his favourite aswell as the fans.

  • Dan

    Mar 18, 2008 at 2:03 AM

    Comment #8

    Oba Loves playing football he wants to play, it seems to me, his just not there for the money.. not like some players at the club..

    He needs to be played in the remaining games, if newcastle are a chance to stay up..

    no more smith.. the 3 prong attack of owen viduka and martins sounds awesome to me..

  • CJ

    Mar 18, 2008 at 2:12 AM

    Comment #9

    KK say’s he does not want his players doing cartwheels and backflips when they come off Oba is the only one that can do that it would be funny he he scored a hatrick on saturday and back flipped off the pitch. 100000000000000-1 at Boylesports Martins to back flip off the pitch.

  • ObaFan2

    Mar 18, 2008 at 2:18 AM

    Comment #10

    CJ, would love it 😀

  • Rocky

    Mar 18, 2008 at 3:29 AM

    Comment #11

    Just got back from the game. In the end I guess it was a fair result and we can take heart from the fact that we came back from 1 – 0 down to pull 1 back. At least it stops the rot and hopefully prepare us for that win that has been eluding us.

    A few observations from the game today:

    Nicky Butts distribution is shockingly poor

    Defence are too casual – Clear the ball 1st time

    Taylor needs to cut out the mistakes

    Geremis set play distribution was shocking

    It was good to see Viduka back, we need to get him fit

    Apart from that we played some neat football and with a bit of luck we could have won it. Owen worked his socks off and was everywhere and capped it off with a great goal. Martins was fantastic, unlucky not to score and to be taken off.

    I thought Keegan should have taken off Viduka for Carroll and Geremi for Nzogbia. We wud have had a better chance of nicking it.

    Last but not least, Keegan deserves a pat on the back for finally deciding to drop Smith. Now we await Butt……….

    P.S – Brum support is abysmal. No singing, no support – If it wasn’t for us geordies, St Andrews would have been like a morgue. 1 Brum fan was so incensed at our fans taunting them, went on to the pitch heading towards us and it tiook 5 stewards to drag him out. Long live the toon!!!!!!

  • nate

    Mar 18, 2008 at 4:07 AM

    Comment #12

    I was also shocked that Oba was taken off for Zog, I think because I was hoping we would go on and try to win and so was thinking that Zog would come on for Geremi because Geremi’s free kicks and corners were just awful. But I can see the point made by Keegan that he wanted to shore up the midfield, I just think it was kind of playing for the draw at that point.

    I like Oba a lot and think he is one of the few we should keep [more so than Owen]. But he does tend to get kind of upset when things don’t work out, not just when he was taken off, but he tends to throw his arms up when chances go missing. I think this is because he hasn’t been getting playing time this year, he hasn’t been scoring, and because he’s young. On the other hand, you can see by his reaction on the pitch that he’s fully committed, go back and watch when Taylor scored against Arsenal, the most excited guy on the pitch was Oba. So I think if he’s given the chance he can turn out great, but I kind of agree with Ed that he might be getting frustrated and want to leave in the summer.

    The other thing about Oba and Owen in this match is that it seemed to me that for all our chances in the second half, both the goal and the missed chances, it was Oba and Owen involved, with Viduka nowhere to be seen. They seem to play well together and I think its good evidence that they can play together up front, with perhaps Viduka on the bench. Its not that I dislike Viduka, I think he has great skill, but when he’s up front we seem to just want to boot the ball up to him, while it seemed like Oba and Owen were able to link up a bit better.

  • Sean from Hong Kong

    Mar 18, 2008 at 4:19 AM

    Comment #13

    Martins always 120% of his heart to NUFC. I can feel how he was heartbreaken being subsituted…
    He did every think right in the game, setting up the goal for Owen, running with ball, shooting on target
    I dunno why Keegan got him out, owen should, viduka should and barton should but not OBI….

  • Tripp

    Mar 18, 2008 at 4:33 AM

    Comment #14

    Oba was drifting and with the formation being 4-3-3 KK didn’t want the midfield to be taxed to heavily late in the game. He made the decision to take the point and not pull another Blackburn. As others have said on other posts tonight, the Duke was holding the ball up well, so taking him off wouldn’t make sense in the late stages.

  • obamagic

    Mar 18, 2008 at 5:34 AM

    Comment #15

    I hope Oba stays in the toon for the remaining of his career.

  • american pie

    Mar 18, 2008 at 5:52 AM

    Comment #16


  • nufc1111

    Mar 18, 2008 at 7:11 AM

    Comment #17

    Whats with the viduka slagging he gave us something the other two up front cant he could hold the ball up and brought the other forwards into he had a good game for his first in about 8weeks, reason why he should play everygame towards the end of the season is he take at least 2-3 players everytime he has the ball, our others players must relalise this and use the space available to make runs and take adv of his ability to release and create space….
    Oba was the best player out there tonight…. i was screaming for keegan to take of barton, yes he tried hard but his first touch was pathetic amount of time he lost the ball due to poor control and his passing was very down, butt on the other hand was class broke up play and released it wide, thought geremi was solid except for his set plays were poor, Owen should the reason why he is captain he worked his ass off and he is loving it!! Enrique looked a little asleep along with the rest of the defence first half but then they all got themselves together second half and birmingham were lucky to get a point they wern’t in the game at all second half full credit to the lads, was great to see smith not in the line up as he has been poor this season no one tries harder but sometimes effort isn’t enough!!

    Harper (7) Looks great in goal…
    Beye (6.5) Solid in 2nd half poor effort for his crosses
    Taylor (6) showed in 2nd half why hes rated highly
    Faye (6) Did ok but his fault for the goal
    Enrique (6) Asleep first half, very solid 2nd
    Barton (4) Worked hard but control and passing was shocking
    Butt (7) Did his job very well
    Geremi (6) Solid game just lacked quality from set pieces
    Martins (8) MOM gave his all was unlucky not to score
    Owen (7) Worked hard all game great captains goal
    Viduka (7) Good game back held ball up well and took 2-3 players everytime

    Great second half we hammered them, 1st half we struggled but they really only created one clear cut chance which they took bring on fulham i think owen and martins will really tear them apart!!

  • Kein

    Mar 18, 2008 at 7:46 AM

    Comment #18

    Rocky – I think Butt was quite good yesterday..much better than Barton who seemed slow and not sharp..he lost the ball about 15 times!! Geremi was basic shite..

    By the way, Keegan isn’t exactly the same size than Oba..so he should be a bit scared.. 🙂

  • AdamCF

    Mar 18, 2008 at 7:48 AM

    Comment #19

    I felt that Owen should’ve come off at the 30 minute mark for N’Zogbia. And then Carroll at the 60. But hey, I’m not the manager.

  • Ed Harrison

    Mar 18, 2008 at 8:23 AM

    Comment #20

    nufc1111 – nice work.

  • Spyro

    Mar 18, 2008 at 8:25 AM

    Comment #21

    Rocky your a legend, thanks for confirming that, i KNEW brum support was crap, all i could here was our fans the WHOLE game, oh well, they probably went home and put their villa shirts back on eh? lol

    As for Martins, his passion puts some of our english players to shame, he should be the face of NUFC

  • nufc1111

    Mar 18, 2008 at 8:42 AM

    Comment #22

    Cheers ed, been sitting on it all day lol… watched it in OZ was fist pumping when Owen scored…. Great effort by the lads look out fulham!!

  • Sandy McNair

    Mar 18, 2008 at 9:14 AM

    Comment #23

    well done oba

  • neozero

    Mar 18, 2008 at 10:50 AM

    Comment #24

    Butt and martins was by far our best players on the pitch. taylor and faye arent really at their best. enrique was another player who did really well yesterday


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