Newcastle manager Joe Kinnear has confirmed that Shola Ameobi was forced into action yesterday, after not really passing a fitness test yesterday morning.
Shola – not 100% fit yesterday
Shola looked at least a yard off the pace yesterday, but scored the crucial penalty equalizer, in the draw with local rivals Sunderland.
Kinnear said that the 27-year-old striker was pressed into playing as Michael Owen, Mark Viduka and Obafemi Martins were all sidelined.
Kinnear said yesterday:
“I gave him a fitness test this morning. He said he was feeling it – his injury – but I said, ‘You still have to play’,”
So the obvious question in all of this concerns Xisco, our other fit striker, and what is wrong with the lad?
We’ve got to believe that Newcastle have an agreement with Deportivo to pay them so much money if Xisco plays a certain number of games, and Newcastle don’t want to do that, because they’ve made up their minds not to keep the lad.
The number of games could well be 10 and so far Xisco has started 4 games and been a substitute twice – so that would explain it.
Hope somebody has explained this to the 22 year-old, since he’s looked decent when he’s played.
But this also shows that Kinnear has great confidence in Shola, and of course Ameobi will do anything for Newcastle, when asked, but we already knew that.
It’s not the first time Shola has played when he hasn’t been fully fit, and he takes some stick from the fans, but he hung in there and scored the equalizing goal for his home town club.