Swan Song – From Walker To Rio – It’s Now One Step Closer


Shola Ameobi was included in the Nigerian squad for the home game against Ethiopia today, which was the second leg of the two game tie, after Nigeria won the first leg 2-1 in Addis Ababa last month.

And the game has just finished at the U.J. Esuene Stadium in Calabar, and Nigeria won by 2-0 with a penalty from Victor Moses after just 20 minutes, and a goal from substitute Victor Obinna Nsofor after 82 minutes, and that means that Nigeria, the African Cup Champions have won 4-1 on aggregate, and they go to the World Cup Finals in Brazil next year – and there’s a chance that Shola Ameobi can be there as a swan song to his career as a Newcastle United player.

shola ameobi nigeria

Shola Ameobi in Nigeria’s colors

In January Shola Ameobi had to pull out of the Nigerian squad for the African Cup of Nations, and in fact they went onto win the tournament, but Shola had given his word to his boss Alan Pardew that he would play for Newcastle if  Demba Ba left and of course Papiss Cisse was off with Senegal to the African tournament also.

And it seems after that Shola thought his International career, as short as it had been was over, but he wrote a letter to Nigerian coach Stephen Keshi, and it seems that Stephen was understanding, and Shola is back in the Nigerian squad this season.

Shola explained in the Newcastle Journal this morning he though he would never play in a World Cup – but now that seems a possibility:

“It is not something I thought was going to happen. I always thought I would be sat in a bar watching it,” “Everything that did happen I had to explain,” “I basically gave my word when I signed my contract that when Papiss and Demba had to go, that meant I couldn’t.”

“Did I feel the fact I missed the African Nations Cup would cost me the World Cup? Well Newcastle didn’t want me to go. I gave my world about the African Nations and nothing else. I was disappointed not to play in the African Nations Cup but I am a man of my word and I had to stand by what I said. Everything is fine now, life goes on and I am pleased I have this opportunity.”

“I might get a chance to play in it now.” “I know nothing about being at a Championships of that magnitude, and it is refreshing at my age to get that chance. I am experienced enough to know I might not get that chance again. I will be doing everything I can to get there.”

“I  was a player who always wanted to play at the highest level.” “That is all I ever wanted to do. I wanted to play international football. When you watch it you want to be involved.”  “I thought my chance had gone. When you look at what has happened with Rickie Lambert it is inspiring to know you can never write anything off in football.”

“There are players in squads you never thought would make it who did. In that respect it is very inspiring. It just shows you what hard work can do. It has been great to think the Nigerian coach has recognised what I can bring to the squad.”

Shola turned 32 last month and he has played well in our last two games as he has partnered Loic Remy, with Papiss Cisse being completely out of form at the moment.

And this is Shola’s final year of his contract at Newcastle, as we don’t think his contract will be renewed, although it maybe it could be for say one year.

But Shola has become a big and positive voice in the dressing room, which is why we think at some time in the future Shola will join the Newcastle coaching staff, although he could still play a few more years in football as a player.

And with Nigeria qualifying for Brazil next summer, it would be great if the lad from Walker makes Rio for the World Cup next summer – and today it is one step closer.

Now Shola has to keep playing well for his home town club – Newcastle United.

Comments welcome.

Ian Begg is a reader who recently found out that his Mom was very ill, and he has to return to Australia. Ian has a Platinum Club season ticket that has £700 left on it, and he is willing to sell it for £550 or a best offer.

Please see if you can help Ian out, and you can contact him by email at ian_s_begg@hotmail.com – thanks.

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103 comments so far

  • KevinHann

    Nov 16, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    Comment #1

    Hey there, guys!

    I see with the lack of Newcastle related news during the international break the usual stall to anti and pro Ashley discussions is in place again

    Do you think if France don’t make it to the World Cup it may actually have some positive influence though? I’m as concerned about the drop in motivation in our French camp as much as each one of you but it may also allow us to keep hold of the core of the team beyond the next summer and if Pardew can channel the frustration the lads may actually perform better than we expect after the initial disappointment (as we are currently in a pretty good position when you think of it).

    It is way too early to get excited but our schedule gives us a wonderful window of opportunity to at least make December a very, very passionate month once again and while most of you are slating Pardew I can’t completely ignore the fact he is the first since sir Bobby Robson to replicate the emotions I experienced in the early 2000?s.

    I am enjoying your banter even though I don’t post here often. As a matter of fact these very discussions have inspired me to look for a fan-based angle while writing my own FM14 story. I would be curious to hear if you feel I have managed to catch the general North-East sentiment surrounding our beloved club – if you don’t have anything better Newcastle related to discuss right now, please take a look and let me know how you find it

    http://www.fm-base.co.uk/forum/football-manager-2014-manager-stories/147496-blasphemy-seven-clubs-lock-horns-title-after-sir-alex-fergusons-retirement.html

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  • Bucks mag

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:04 PM

    Comment #2

    I’d be over the moon to see Shola representing the city in Brazil, I hope he makes the squad. Get in son!

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:18 PM

    Comment #3

    Fatty will be very cross and unpredictable if France don’t make that WC.

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  • ONLINE GUY

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:18 PM

    Comment #4

    KevinHann..Just read that thing you directed uz to, got to the bit about Newcastle United..cant help thinking its just childish Piss taking ..No humour in it If your a Newcastle Fan ..Seems like we are a target ..an easy target for childish piss taking attempt. Grow up.

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  • croftus5678

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:19 PM

    Comment #5

    nigeria has motivated shola more than we have ever done imo so i really hope he goes as long as possible.

    he’s acttualy playing well for us (even though he’s still not scoring) and you never know these internationals may mean he will have some sort of value when he is sold.

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  • Tsunki

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:21 PM

    Comment #6

    Ah! The irony!

    Remy, Cabaye, Debuchy, Ben Arfa….just a selection of international class players who are unlikely to see a world cup for at least 5 years. But never mind, the elderly Shola Ameobi will come back and tell them all about Rio. Its funny in a mean-spirited kind of way.

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  • 89Norcal

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:26 PM

    Comment #7

    Deschamps deserves the world of hurt coming his way if France don’t qualify. Sad to see classy players like Debuchy, Cabaye, and Remy miss their once in a lifetime chance of a Brazilian WC.

    Just read the previous article about our finances. If Pards or the Joke come in 1 more time and tell us we still can’t afford to spend money I’m going to be sick.

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  • ONLINE GUY

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    Comment #8

    Hull city about to change their name to Hull Tigers ..got to thinking what name could we give the likes of Sun*erland , Boro ? ..

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  • 89Norcal

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:29 PM

    Comment #9

    @Tsunki

    It’s like some kind of cruel reverse-karma

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  • Tsunki

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:29 PM

    Comment #10

    KevinHann – I really really hope you have a day job, that is desperate stuff. Just my honest critique. If I were you I’d consider sticking to reading the Ashley Wars on this blog, and give satire a wide berth.

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  • KevinHann

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:33 PM

    Comment #11

    @ONLINE GUY
    It’s not supposed to be funny; quite the contrary it is striving for realism (as much as possible given the medium and the basic demands of a setting). I take it you didn’t get into it after the initial post or it just isn’t your poison – which is fair enough.

    Although you should appreciate there is a lot of effort and attention to detail in there for it to be merely “childish piss taking” – and I’m not some 16-year old trying to wind you up. If that’s how you feel about it I’m sincerely sorry.

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  • Tsunki

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    Comment #12

    89Norcal – I think Indian Magpie is too angry to even type a response to the news his beloved Shola is a World Cup International Striker. 🙂

    If the mackems were renamed I was thinking along the lines of roadkill – what about the Flat Cats?

    Boro SmogMonsters.

    Hatepool Monkeys? Just saying….

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  • 89Norcal

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:40 PM

    Comment #13

    @Tsunki
    Well at least BAD karma is working in the case of Indian Mag 🙂

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:42 PM

    Comment #14

    Didn’t even bother reading the link when I saw it was related to a computer game! Biggest issue with those games is making armchair fans think they know about football!

    I’m really bored of talking about Ashley, I’m much more interested in how this team is going to move forward.

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  • Ciaran

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    Comment #15

    You’re the one who constantly defends him. While many of us have our complaints about Ashley and air these complaints on a regular basis, no one is forcing you to counter these arguments. You could simply not join in. Or is that contrary to your need to be centre of attention?

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  • 89Norcal

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:52 PM

    Comment #16

    @TDS
    Unfortunately even when we want to look forward that fat man rears his head again.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:54 PM

    Comment #17

    Bloody hell Ciaran, are you on here 24 hours a day??

    I have been countering them because it’s frustrating that people like you are constantly spouting rhetoric because you want to be the rebel.

    I used to think that we just had different views, but your total lack of openness to others’ views makes me think you’re just an a***hole. I hope for your sake it’s just an online persona, not that I think that’s an excuse.

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  • KevinHann

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:55 PM

    Comment #18

    @TDS
    Come on, mate, it’s not like I come out of the blue and act I-know-it-all or something. Even if I rarely engage in discussions here I’ve been a regular on this blog for years, and I’ve been a proud Newcastle fan for approximately two thirds of my life even though I’ve taken a lot of stick for it (and no, I’m not 22 or less).
    As for taking the club forward there isn’t much more we can expect under the current regime. This is a good season to make a surprise breakthrough as a lot of the conditions match those from two seasons ago – the big dogs are in some forms of transition and with the fierce competition they will lose a lot of points and the table will remain pretty tight. Although the emergence of Southampton will make it harder.
    We were really close to something big two seasons ago – a lot could have been done if we played Champions League instead of Europa League last year and this season would have been an excellent opportunity to build on.

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  • Douglas

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:57 PM

    Comment #19

    ToonDarnSarf:

    Regarding my posting earlier today. I was not accusing FMA of illegal practice. There are many legal relationships / contracts which can be used to benefit Sports Direct. Perfectly legal. I repeat: FMA has almost certainly set up (legal) contracts which result in less revenu for NUFC and more for SD. That way he makes more money for SD. Dont forget SD represents all that FMA is: its his life, it is him.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 16, 2013 at 5:59 PM

    Comment #20

    89Norcal

    He doesn’t need to mate. I know it’s frustrating with things like the media ban and NUST getting kicked off the fans forum, but neither will be 100% Ashley’s fault. I just wish the pettiness would end on both sides.

    People didn’t say as much about the c**p that Shepherd and Douglas Hall got up to, yet we had years of mediocrity with some shocking managers.

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  • Big Pappa Cissé

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:00 PM

    Comment #21

    Might stick a cheeky tenner on Shola for the golden boot 😉

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:04 PM

    Comment #22

    KevinHann

    Then I don’t get it, why make a blog post on a computer game site? At least Ciaran set up a NUFC blog about the club itself. What do issues around our club have to do with a computer game?

    Simple fact is that our finances are miles behind the top 6, it will take some excellent progress over the next few years to climb into the mix. I’m not going to whinge until then, I’m hoping we’ll get 7th or 8th this season.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:07 PM

    Comment #23

    Douglas

    Then they appears the accounts.

    And like I’ve said before, Ashley owns 100% of NUFC and only part of SD so it doesn’t make sense to divert say £10M that he owns to SD. If he owns 62% of SD, that money effectively becomes only £6.2M of his assets.

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  • 89Norcal

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:14 PM

    Comment #24

    @TDS
    Fair point on Shep n Hall, it’s just maddening how close we get to a breakthrough and how our club shoots itself in the foot soon after. I guess the only positive is back then we played some great football, whereas now SJP is a billboard for the Fathead’s corporate banners and he only cares about profit.

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:16 PM

    Comment #25

    TDsarf,
    The only credible argument people have to defend Ashley is “look how much money Hall and Shepherd took”. Shall we say Stalin wasn’t such a bad bloke look what Hitler done or Pol Pot was a canny bloke look what Mao Tze Dong got up to, I suppose you could defend Harold Shipman when compared with Peter Sutcliffe. We all know what Shepherd and Hall took, the major difference is they wanted tl profiteer while trying to make Newcastle a major player where as that fat seller of tat wants to profiteer and couldn’t give a flying fusk whether we succeed or not.

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:17 PM

    Comment #26

    BPC.
    Don’t.

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  • bills-son

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:21 PM

    Comment #27

    Tds,

    Ruddy @ 15 says you only counter the anti Ashley comments because you want to be ‘the centre of attention’.

    Interesting.

    So, obviously it’s alright for Ruddy to call anyone deluded, blah, blah, blah, when they come up with anything other than Ashley slagging – but when someone disagrees with Ruddy’s point of view they are an attention seeker.

    Guess why Ruddy is a world authority on attention seekers. …

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:27 PM

    Comment #28

    Fight night.

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  • yo-yo

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:34 PM

    Comment #29

    If France do not qualify then Ashley’s French assets may well lose their relative value as players showcasing at any international finals tend to see their wonga quotient rise dramatically. So the big man won’t be able to cash in if they don’t qualify. If Cabs had a great World Cup what do you think that’d do for his tranfer value – add £5m+ ?

    So all the Anti-Ashley camp ought to be shouting for Ukraine on Tuesday….

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  • JackButler

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:37 PM

    Comment #30

    yo-yo

    With a good world cup Cabaye’s value may well go up but is there anyone out there who would realistically hand over close to £20 million for the lad?

    Personally I think anyone willing to spend that much on him must be off their heads

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  • croftus5678

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:37 PM

    Comment #31

    ashleys profits last year = £0 nufc (unless he took some out we dont know about) £26mil sd.

    so he could have made maybe £2mil from advertising (no idea how much it really is) but the fans ect would be looking at accounts saying the greedy so and so he’s took money out ect expecting that money to go on transfers or he could get advertisement for nothing on his actual money earning business which must far more than make up for the 2 mil lost when sd would have had to pay prob more for that type of advertising in the first place imo.

    he’s not daft he’s just playing us all like he’s always done. its just he has solicitors and accountants that can take advantage of things like this where most of us wouldnt think of it.

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  • Big Pappa Cissé

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:38 PM

    Comment #32

    @ JFA

    No faith 🙂 .

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  • Ciaran

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:40 PM

    Comment #33

    Our accounts are deceptive, and most of us would not bet that he is using legal loopholes to ensure that he makes as much money as possible. Whether that includes outsourcing NUFC activities to his other business interests including SD with merchandise.

    What we as a fan base need to do is to challenge him every step of the way, at the very least demanding for more clarity and asking the pertinent questions as to why we are unable to challenge other clubs who are similar, if not smaller, in stature than ourselves in the financial aspect of the game.

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  • Big Pappa Cissé

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:42 PM

    Comment #34

    I just hope I get a decent team in the sweepstake at work . I got Cameroon in 2010

    Fingers crossed for Germany or Spain 😉

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:44 PM

    Comment #35

    89Norcal

    We played some great football under cavalier KK and some great football under world class Geordie legend SBR, but I remember some garbage from the others despite some amazing attacking talent. Granted, scintillating football is rare for us these days, but I hope for more!

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:45 PM

    Comment #36

    JFA

    You’re comparing Mike Ashley to Hitler? Oh dear…

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  • JackButler

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:46 PM

    Comment #37

    Ciaran

    We all already know why we can’t compete with club of a similar stature or those who are smaller than us and thats because Ashley doesn’t want to do anything with us other than survive in this league.

    While we are in this league he gets FREE global advertising for SD and at the end of this season he see’s a massive increase in the clubs income which no doubt will not go to improving our squad, we are now the cash cow he always wanted

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:46 PM

    Comment #38

    Yo yo,
    I think France not qualifying could turn out pretty bad for us, I think the only thing that kicked Cabayes ar$e in to gear was making that WC squad, I don’t what else there is for them to play for, the club have announced the FA cup is not a priority and with Shola having to start games a top seven finish is surely unrealistic.

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  • Ciaran

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:47 PM

    Comment #39

    No he’s not. He is saying the lesser of two evils is not necessarily good. If that sentiment is lost on you then you clearly have no grasp of analogies.

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  • ToonDarnSarf

    Nov 16, 2013 at 6:47 PM

    Comment #40

    Bills-son

    Spot on. I wonder who really has the agenda…I just want people to get behind the lads that matter. Those who are trying hard to get us results.

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