Michael Owen talked today about Newcastle’s survival stakes in the Premier League this season.
Michael Owen – training with Habib Beye yesterday
It was Habib’s first day back in full training 😀
Michael told the Newcastle Journal this morning:
“We’ve always been flitting around three or four places off the bottom, but it’s only since we lost to Manchester United and results went against us that we have found ourselves in real trouble,”
“There is a determination to put it right. I don’t feel we are in the last-chance saloon yet, but it is getting damn important we start picking up points and fast.”
“We have to realise we are responsible for getting results above anything else. That responsibility filters through to the players, from the fans, the staff at the club.”
“Everyone’s backs are against the wall now and nobody wants to see Newcastle United not playing in the Premier League next season.”
Even by Newcastle’s standards, most fans agree that this season has been one of the worst in recent memory with the season not starting off too well with Kevin Keegan leaving the club after an almighty row with the Newcastle Board to do with transfers.
Then of course we had the fans protesting against owner Mike Ashley, who tried tos ell the club, while at the same time shutting up shop on saying anything to the players or the fans.
Then just before the Liverpool game Mike announced he was keeping the club and we don’t think it was a coincidence that the next day Shay Given said he wanted to leave the club. The favt we were wipped 5-1 by Liverpool that day, didn’t help of course.
Michael talked about all the disruption:
“I definitely think it has been a fractious season, even by Newcastle’s standards,”
“Looking at this club from the outside before I came here it always looked as though there was turmoil off the pitch, players fighting with each other, or managers getting sacked after two minutes. There was always something going on.”
“But from afar it also looked a fantastic place to play when things are going in the right direction, with the fans behind you, riding the wave of optimism which engulfs the place when things go well.”
“It has shown that when Newcastle have been really successful. There have always been two sides to the club and unfortunately this year has seen a lot of turmoil on and off the pitch.”
“Regardless of that, it’s just an easy excuse for players to make if they say this has happened off the pitch, and that has happened so that is why results haven’t been good.”
“I don’t care what has happened to the chairman, the tea lady or whoever, when you’re out on the pitch you’re focused on trying to win and that’s it.”
“Anyone who uses what has happened to the club this season at boardroom level, it’s just an excuse in my eyes.”
“Thankfully nobody here has been using that as an excuse.”
Those are good words from Michael because the players cannot and shouldn’t (and presumably don’t) use the calamities of this season as any kind of excuse. Well at least not since Joe Kinnear came on board in late September.
As Michael says, we have to start picking up points, and quickly.
Anything but a win today will not go down too well with fans, and you can bet there will be even more talk about relegation, and even more anxiety on Tyneside than there already is.
Let’s hope that just doesn’t happen today.
Howay The Lads – you can do it!