Keegan Still Has Doubts On Owen and Smith

We were surprised to see Alan Smith come on as a substitute for Oba Martins after 63 minutes in yesterdays win against Valencia.


 Keegan – still has doubts on Owen, Smith fitness

That’s because we thought his move to Everton was fairly imminent, although we think Kevin still wants to keep the experienced striker. The fee has said to have been agreed between the clubs at £3M, but if that’s the case, why was he playing at all?

But manager Kevin Keegan’s thoughts were on Michael Owen after the game, as the only thing missing yesterday was more bite in front of goal.

Keegan said after the game:

“Normally at the start of a season you wouldn’t want to risk any players, not Michael Owen or Alan Smith. If there is a doubt I will leave them out.”

“It will be Michael or myself who will decide if he is fit enough to come into a Premier League game,”

The Spanish Cup winners, who had a delayed journey to Newcastle, and the game was subsequently put back two hours because of their late arrival on Tyneside, took the lead through Joaquin in the first half. It was a poor goal for Newcastle to concede, and showed uncertainty between the two central defenders, Taylor and Cacapa, who seems a bit too slow for the Premier League.

And certainly Euro 2008 top scorer David Villa showed his class, after coming on as a second-half substitute, and caused the Newcastle defense some discomfort.

But Newcastle were in full flow in the last 20 minutes or so, as the game was played at a frantic pace, and Damien Duff equalized 12 minutes from time before Milner tapped in the winner after 90 minutes, with just 60 seconds left of added time, after Steven Taylor headed against a post.

This will give the Newcastle team some confidence for their daunting trip to Manchester United next Sunday, but whether Michael Owen will be fit for that game, still seems to be uncertain at best.

Comments welcome.

29 comments so far

  • Collocini

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:06 AM

    Comment #1

    1st comment.Hope Smith stays and proves the mags wroung.

  • Frankieboy

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:07 AM

    Comment #2

    I do not want Smithy to leave but if he does go surely we should be asking the £6M we paid for him.
    £3M is a giveaway.
    Keep him KK

  • smudge

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:18 AM

    Comment #3

    thats right! keep smith kk!! he is a winner

  • Graham

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:19 AM

    Comment #4

    I’ve doubts too about Owens fitness – but i’ve just got doubts full stop about Smith.

    I reckon Smith will stay until Jan at least – maybe a few games in his correct position will increase his confidence – and hopefully get a goal or 2 at the same time, but maybe thats asking a bit too much

  • TomPoon

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:19 AM

    Comment #5

    Sooner he goes the better.

    Yes he is a nice guy, but at the end of the day NUFC are not a charity.

    He is crap and we get zero return on our 60k per week. I would give him away to get his 4 year, 12 million contract off the books!

  • nufc toon malaysia

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:21 AM

    Comment #6

    smith to stay

  • CraigThaiToon

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:22 AM

    Comment #7

    Turding myself at the prospect of old trafford – and that will be the case even if we sign Berbatov, Diego and Puyol before kick off!

    Not Keegans style but i hope we ‘park the bus’. And let me tell u this: I would love it if we beat them, I WOULD LOVE IT!

  • Matt

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:24 AM

    Comment #8

    Smith is not worth 6m I’m sorry. He’s barely worth 3. Smithy’s never been the same since his injury and Allardyce was stupid to think he could revive the lads career.

    He’s got the right attitiude but the wrong attributes.

  • The real big AL

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:48 AM

    Comment #9

    Anybody who booed smith at yesterdays game, shame on you!!! not true newcastle fans at all!! yes the lad has been poor for us but he has just got his head down and got on with it, he has never complained to the press, spat his dummy out or slagged the fans off, which i wouldn’t blame him for doing given the comments some of the fans on this site make. while he is in an nufc shirt we should get behind him 100%. to the boo boys – if you aren’t gonnaget behind your players then stay the f**k away from sjp, we don’t need or want your kind of support

  • Gami

    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:50 AM

    Comment #10

    Sell them both vampires of money.get dedicated players like skjbreed

  • clinta

    Aug 10, 2008 at 12:18 PM

    Comment #11

    really looking forward to man u now, can’t wait to see the game.

  • Punk Skunk

    Aug 10, 2008 at 12:23 PM

    Comment #12

    The real big Al,
    Here, here mate!..
    …Anyone who boos anyone in a B&W shirt is a divvy!..Pack it in, or piss off!..

  • Nick Dryden

    Aug 10, 2008 at 12:33 PM

    Comment #13

    We were mugged for 6M. Allardyce says a lot but it was a shocking call as was Barton. Smith was finished after his busted leg and Fergie knew it. He must have been rubbing his hands together!!
    And will people stop with the gives 100% rubbish. That should be a given for every player.
    So what if he is good in the dressing room, the bottom line is he gets paid a hell of a lot for giving away dangerous free kicks and collecting yellow / red cards. It really is like playing with a man down for 60K a week!!.

  • Nick Dryden

    Aug 10, 2008 at 12:34 PM

    Comment #14

    Plus he has spat the dummy. He famously said ” I didn’t come here to sit on the bench !!

  • Punk Skunk

    Aug 10, 2008 at 12:37 PM

    Comment #15

    Nick, granted…But y’still don’t boo him, not while he plays for the TOON!..

  • wilko

    Aug 10, 2008 at 1:16 PM

    Comment #16

    turns my stomach to hear that we are booing our own players, shame on those who did.
    At least Smith has never said anything like he wants to leave and has always had the highest regard for NUFC and the fans . I remember him saying he wants to win something in a Newcastle shirt, I like that kind of talk. If nothing else Smith has passion , even if he is not quite the player he was.

  • Marty

    Aug 10, 2008 at 1:35 PM

    Comment #17

    I don`t agree with booing our players either.
    But didn`t we see DUFF in Smiths position n showing him how it`s done.
    DUFF is a midfiekder n scores goals but SMUDGE doesn`t get near it.
    Hope Smith proves us wrong n starts scoring,1 against MAN U would be a nice place to start scoring


    Aug 10, 2008 at 1:38 PM

    Comment #18

    I wasn’t at the match, so was he booed when he came onto the field or after he had been on for a while. If the former then yes it was not the actions of real supporters, if the latter then did he really deserve it.
    In either case fans do have the right to show their feelings, rightly or wrongly.
    Had that header gone in he would have heard cheers ringing out.
    I’d be happy to be booed onto the pitch for 60k a week. 🙂

  • Callum

    Aug 10, 2008 at 1:43 PM

    Comment #19

    Man utd without Rooney, Ronaldo, Nani, Anderson, Saha, i think we have as good a chance as we’ve ever had at beating them.

  • save our club

    Aug 10, 2008 at 2:22 PM

    Comment #20

    booing smith does not surprise me one bit at home , 10,000 supporters and 40,000 spectators and that has been the case for 10 years , best away support in the world but at home its like a funeral and all because the same idiots jumped on the band wagon when keegan first arrived as manager, and do not understand where we had come from and what we had been watching before that

  • the son of shearer

    Aug 10, 2008 at 2:30 PM

    Comment #21

    the fact is if smith wants to go to everton let him he just isnt the player he was at leeds and why pay 60-70k a week for a bench warmer. we should cut our losses and let him go, through shot shy shola in aswell. still no need to boo the player he is only doing his job and hes a player who will always give 110%.

  • Musicman

    Aug 10, 2008 at 2:31 PM

    Comment #22

    The treatment of Smithy was shocking and disgraceful, get behind the lads and the managment and support our team or ‘f’ off elsewhere, i’ve heard this kind of crap 4 Butt and even Bobby Robson, the same people who want a stand named after him probably……… Stop booing our team

  • Jakey Toon

    Aug 10, 2008 at 4:54 PM

    Comment #23

    well said musicman,im with you!

  • the son of shearer

    Aug 10, 2008 at 5:04 PM

    Comment #24

    it seems everyone agrees we shouldnt be booing but time and time again when the going gets tough we dont get behind the team just echoes of boo’, the amount of people who is on ashleys back saying hes just there for the quick buck must be mad. sure hes a clever business man you dont get in his position being daft… but time and time again kk has said he wont buy just for the sake of buying, he had put up 17million for modric before spurs stole him. so the money will be there if the player is right. no point panic buying we all seen what happens then

  • Nick Dryden

    Aug 10, 2008 at 5:48 PM

    Comment #25

    Wilko what do you expect him to say – ” I’m only here for the money” !

    No I wouldn’t boo Smith but for 6m we were absolutely shafted. just let’s save 12.5m in wages and get rid.

  • Ross

    Aug 10, 2008 at 8:16 PM

    Comment #26

    bill f-he replaced oba and was booed pretty heavily when he jogged onto the field. we’re not talking the odd jeer here and there, he was heavily booed.

  • samvil

    Aug 10, 2008 at 8:58 PM

    Comment #27

    i don’ think cacapa is to blame for the goal. right winger joaquin is the left back’s job to follow in that situation and n’zogbia missed his marking on him.

    that shows why KK is so keen to have a quality left back in soon.

  • Obafan

    Aug 10, 2008 at 9:14 PM

    Comment #28

    I’m not a fan of Smith. But as long as he wears the black n white stripes we all are supposed to support him, either if he plays good or not. Hearing that a part of the crowd started to boo him when he came on is such a shame. IMO these boo’ers are no real fans of NUFC.

  • Born Again Geordie

    Aug 11, 2008 at 8:32 AM

    Comment #29

    He came on for 20 mins and did nothing – ran around like a headless chicken – get rid there are better players out there – yes i do not question his commitment to the club but I do question his ability!


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