Kevin Wants Owen To Stay at Newcastle


Keegan has today talked to the Newcastle Journal and thinks now is the time for the club to start talking about Michael Owen’s future at the club.

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Michael Owen – starting to show his worth to Newcastle

Kevin told the Journal this morning:

“I’ve already started to say to the club that we should be talking to Michael now about a new contract; not next week, not next month – now,” “I’ve never asked Michael whether he wants to stay. So I can’t answer that. You’ll have to ask Michael , but I’m hoping the answer will be yes.”

“If not, we’ve got another year of him next season and that’s the very least we’ll get. It’s an urgent issue because I don’t think that, whatever finances are, we’ll go out and get a player that’s any better than Michael Owen.”

“That’s the reason I think we should keep him and I think that as long as he doesn’t get injured again the Newcastle fans will see a player who’ll grow into one of the greats here. That’s if we can keep him.”

“That’s what I would want to do. I don’t see why we should be looking all over the world for foreign players and trying to teach them how to play in the Premier League when we’ve got one who knows his way around and whose goal-scoring record is tremendous. I’ll do everything I can to keep him.”

“The time to talk with him is now and that’s what I’ll be urging the chairman to do. There hasn’t been a reaction yet because I only mentioned it last week because I could see this coming. Michael ’s not going to stop scoring goals, he’s not going to stop catching the eye and Michael is going to be wanted by other clubs.”

“But at the moment he’s here and it’s just something that’s come up now. I think Michael would be the first to say that until we sort ourselves out as a team these sort of talks have to be shoved on the back-burner a little bit.”

There’s no doubt Michael had a good game on Saturday, not just because he got the vital winner with a typical headed goal, but he used the ball intelligently proved what a good all round player he has become. That’s similar to Alan Shearer, who was one of the best passers of the ball we’ve seen, but that was hardly mentioned about his game because Alan scored so many goals.

Michael played just behind Mark Viduka and Obafemi Martins, and apparently that’s what he kept doing in training. Michael Owen may have lost some speed, but his experience and intelligence make him a player who can play in different roles now, and still score goals. In our end of game poll to the right, 38% of our readers thought Michael was Newcastle’s best player on Saturday with Oba Martins second at 14%, and that’s with 428 votes so far. The poll is still open so please vote if you haven’t already done so.

Kevin continued:

“When you get the experience Michael has under his belt you can play more or less anywhere. Why we’ve played Michael there is because he’s the one player at the club we know can keep the ball, see a pass and knows when to release the ball.”

“He might get more chances coming from there than standing up against a big man, looking for space. He’s enjoying the role. With the players we’ve got at the moment, it’s the best role for the club and that’s why he’s playing it.”

“I don’t see reason to change too much when something’s working. In training he naturally comes deep and does that and we kept seeing it and seeing it and thought ‘wow, this guy can link us up all day long’.”

Playing Michael in that deep lying position may also help to solve another difficulty we see coming – where to play Oba. We think Oba wants more playing time, and he could be one of the front two that Michal can play behind.

While Michale has played very well since Kevin came to the club, and has scored scored 4 of the 6 goals (Viduka and Faye have the other 2), we still think he needs to show he can maintain this form, and remain injury free.

But it’s also clear that ever since Keegan came back, he has seen Owen as probably our most important player, and we have to think he’s been playing very well in training. Certainly he has stood up to the plate since being appointed captain, and has given Michael that extra responsibility he has thrived on.

Good moves by Kevin Keegan and the King wants Michael as his captain and major player in the battles that lie ahead to take Newcastle back up the league.

All the lads played well on Saturday, and they got the result they deserved, and a clean sheet also. They also deserve the credit coming their way, just like they deserved the criticism when they didn’t perform.

But we’d much rather give out the accolades – every week in fact. 😀

Comments welcome.



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15 comments so far

  • lee

    Mar 24, 2008 at 9:29 AM

    Comment #1

    maybe hes playing for a new contract… what ever though he is playing well.

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  • toonhitman

    Mar 24, 2008 at 9:56 AM

    Comment #2

    WE SHOULD GET OBA SORTED FIRST,SOUNDS LIKE HE MIGHT BE ON HIS TOES AT THE END OF THE SEASON

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  • belfast toon

    Mar 24, 2008 at 10:11 AM

    Comment #3

    i’m not a huge owen fan (i think he is only here fo the money and care’s more about england) but how much would it cost to replace him if he’ playing for a new conract then maybe he dose have a future at newcastle and to be honest he will score more goals than martins ths is a hard one

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  • zhun

    Mar 24, 2008 at 10:15 AM

    Comment #4

    King wanna keep him, so what about Martins?
    the lad made it clear that he wants to play whole match!
    or is that means that we will play 433 in the future?
    no wings and pass through center
    so bring Arshavin!

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  • marcus owen

    Mar 24, 2008 at 10:26 AM

    Comment #5

    First of all i have no hard feeling against KK and i still think he is much better than SA. At least he dropped Smith at last (after 8 games).However, i think some of his decision made at the wrong timing.Why we have to extend owen contract now as we still don’t know by end of the day we can remain in the PL or not?Not even the player is hurry to extend his contract or do you think owen willing to play in the CL?

    To be honest,it is nothing to be proud of when we beat fulham at home,bcoz it is a must win game for us.i really doubt that KK know how to get a win against Spurs or even get a draw there.What i know he will do is send out the same team against fulham and sub Martin at 70min no matter we are winning, drawing or even losing.

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  • Andreas

    Mar 24, 2008 at 10:45 AM

    Comment #6

    I wouldn’t mind Owen to stay (he’s way off his former “world class tag” but nonetheless he is a solid player), but in that case it must be on a performance based contract. Give him 50ish grand as a base and add goal-/assist-/win-/etc. bonuses. If he perform well and score around the 20 mark with a few assist and do so in a winning NUFC side I think it might be ok for him to gain (with bonuses) a salary in parity with his present. The good thing is that if he doesn’t perform or get injured (yet again) it will not be as expensive. Problem is he most likely won’t be interested in such a set up (and if so I think we should contemplate selling him – although at the end of the day it’s MA money so if he deem Owen worth whatever and KK want him to stay he will stay).

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  • ToonKing

    Mar 24, 2008 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #7

    Owen MUST stay with us. period. we are now 80% safe from the drop so we can talk about his contract. Oba will never be as good as him, and to go out and get a player as good or better then him is impossible for us atm.

    If we are going to have any kind of success in the near future, Owen is crucial to it. In fact there are only 2 people at the club how are invaluable for us atm and they are Owen and KK.

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  • Dragoner

    Mar 24, 2008 at 11:25 AM

    Comment #8

    Owen is good, but Toonkind he is NOT one of a kind, there are other clinical finishers we can buy mate, on less wages too…However, staff retention is generally more practical than staff recruitment isnt it

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  • ToonKing

    Mar 24, 2008 at 11:34 AM

    Comment #9

    yeah okay then Dragoner, pls name 3 players who we can realistically get and who have the ability, experience, goal record and pulling power of Mickey.

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  • Leo

    Mar 24, 2008 at 11:41 AM

    Comment #10

    after recent performances i would say sign him up quick

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  • Reb

    Mar 24, 2008 at 3:09 PM

    Comment #11

    I agree with ToonKing — for those saying “sell” please name a few players of Owen’s experience, proven quality and sensible nature (he’ll need it to deal with the pressure at NUFC) that Newcastle will be able to get in to replace Owen. Regardless of price — and if you think a top player of his ilk will come ANY cheaper than 100k per week to Newcastle United, I’d say you’re starkers. And you can not say a word about the lad’s commitment and loyalty, because you’ve shown none to him now. He’s playing well, saying all the right things both verbally and by his actions on & off the pitch, and acting as a proper captain.

    Basically the challenge is this: Owen is “not one of a kind” eh? Name his replacement. A great finisher, who apparently can play in the midfield as well (at least against the sort of teams Newcastle SHOULD be beating, and weren’t under BSA, like Derby) and is of international stature. I can’t think of one who’d come anywhere near Newcastle United.

    Oba Martins is not Owen’s replacement. He’s not got the same skills (imagine Oba as ‘playmaker’ even against Fulham) and he’s not got the same temperament (Oba as captain?). He’s not of the same quality, though I do like Martins and would like to see his contract extended. If Oba can’t tolerate being played “behind” Michael Owen — though currently, he isn’t both have started of late — then the lad needs to move to a club that’s content with mid-table.

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  • Shaz

    Mar 24, 2008 at 3:14 PM

    Comment #12

    it won’t even be an issue.i can’t see owen staying .if he carries on scoring and injury free to end of season , a move will be secured to a bigger club.he is too classy to carry on playing for your club.stop coming on here making out you are doing owen a favour.he cam get top wages at another club.

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  • Elliott

    Mar 24, 2008 at 3:23 PM

    Comment #13

    We need to keep him as a top priority. There’s very little chance we’ll sign another world class player and Owen is our only world class player. Personally I think he’s really connected with the club since Keegan came and having him around especially on a new contract and as captain shows our intent to prospective signings. Martins, on a 90k a week deal is replacable, Owen is not.

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  • Shaz

    Mar 24, 2008 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #14

    Yeah but Owen knows the reason he has almost been dumped by Capello is that he is at at club that is struggling.Apparently even David Bentley has been told to look for a bigger club and play top competitions like champions league.

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  • Punk Skunk

    Mar 24, 2008 at 9:59 PM

    Comment #15

    How Shaz, d’y’mean big or more successful club,
    there is a difference…There are more successful clubs than NUFC, but there aren’t many bigger mate!..14th biggest in football is pretty BIG!..

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