Shola Ameobi made a successful return to the first team last night, when he came on for the injured Andy Carroll, just after half time.
Shola Ameobi – great return to the first team last night
Of course Shola has been at Newcastle since he was a youngster, so he knows all about the frenzy and passion that was on show last night at St. James’ Park.
And when the Nigerian-born striker came on he made the most of it, having not been seen in the Newcastle first team since last January, having been troubled again by his hamstring.
Shola scored a great first goal, and then set up Jose Enrique for a second, and Jose’s first ever goal for the Newcastle club, so could well be the Newcastle Man of the Match last night, although Jose Enrique is currently easily leading in our poll on the home page with 57% of the votes.
Shola seemed only too happy to talk to Newcastle United TV after the game and a terrific Newcastle win:
“I always like to turn and shoot early because it takes keepers off guard.” “Fortunately for me it’s gone through the defender’s legs and in off the post.”
“It was a great feeling and I’m chuffed to bits for the lads and for the fans because they’ve stuck behind us all season.”
“It’s been quite a frustrating season for me in terms of injuries so to be able to come back and help the team to such an important victory is very pleasing.”
“We knew this game was going to be the one which would decide how our season would end up and now we’re 13 points clear of Forest which is huge.”
“We don’t want to jump the gun but that has gone a long way to securing us Premier League status for next season.”
“I’m overjoyed, not just for me but for my team-mates, the coaching staff and the fans – everyone out there was fantastic and did a great job.”
It was fitting that somebody who has only ever played for Newcastle should come on and play such a role in ensuring Newcastle got the win last night against a good-looking and young Nottingham Forest side.
And Shola then set up Jose’s goal in great style, when he back-heeled the ball to Jose, who went on to beat one man and then thump the ball into the goal, for his first ever goal on Tyneside.
The scene that followed will go down in Newcastle folklore, as he whipped off his shirt and was then suddenly buried under 10 Newcastle players – it’s a miracle he wasn’t injured.
Shola talked about how he set up that now famous goal for Jose:
“He’s played a ball in to me and the thing you know with Jose is that he’s always going to want the ball back and thankfully I’ve been able to play it into his path.”
“He looked like a striker after that with the old jink left and right and then he produced a great finish which in the end has capped a great night for us.”
“It’s such a great feeling and he’s delighted with that goal and man-of-the-match performance to go with it so I’m really pleased for him.”
If you haven’t yet seen the goals here they are, including Chris Hughton talking after the game.