If there’s one game that you can bet that Shola Ameobi will have an impact, it’s against local rivals Sunderland.
Shola with Pardew after signing deal to keep him at Newcastle through 2014
Shola has six goals against Sunderland so far in his career, and is second only to the (very) great Jackie Milburn who scored 9 goals against the enemy.
Shola Ameobi turns 30 in October, and is now the most experienced player in these derby games at Newcastle, with 18 appearances, and he knows all about what these games mean:
“Total chaos,” “As a spectacle for both fans and players, it’s total chaos.”
“You look around and everyone is running around like headless chickens trying to win the ball back. That’s the beauty of it.”
“Everyone tries to express themselves in derbies more than they would normally.”
Shola is often the player Newcastle fans love to hate, but in these games he’s usually at or near his very best, and when this lad is on song, he’s almost unplayable.
When he’s not on song, it’s hard to even spot where he is on the pitch.
But if Shola can put in a performance like he gave in the 5-1 annihilation of Sunderland on Halloween day last year, when he scored two great goals, then Newcastle will likely come out with all 3 points.
Shola was born in Nigeria and raised on Tyneside, and he continued:
“Being a Newcastle fan myself, it is the game I look forward to more than any other,”
“Growing up, the derby is the one that gets the city excited and as a player you feel that.”
“So Sunderland are definitely my favorite opponents.”
These derby games are just wonderful for the team that wins, and the exact polar opposite for the team that loses.
We have to hope that the lads make us proud today, and they will not get a better opportunity than today to show the fans what they are made of.
Howay The Lads!!