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Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Class act Owen will inspire greater professionalism at Newcastle

For once the Newcastle board deserves praise. To pull off the £17m purchase of Michael Owen demonstrates the commitment of the board to match the ambition of their fans and aim for the top of the table. After a shaky couple of seasons and a disappointing start to the present campaign, it is also a much-needed purchase to revive positivity in the well-supported North-East club.

Michael Owen is a class act. He conducted himself with expert professionalism both with Liverpool and Real Madrid, and will expect the same standards from his new team-mates. The potential ripple effect is a major reason why Newcastle has made a great purchase. In the past couple of seasons, some prominent players at Newcastle seem to have lacked the discipline required for a club to progress. Owen will demand better- and I think his team-mates will respond to the example he sets.

Committing himself on paper for four years has reduced my concerns that he is half-hearted for the Newcastle cause. Everyone knows Liverpool was his preferred choice of club- but Newcastle is by no means a far inferior option. They regularly attract over 50,000 fans to St James' Park, and their purchases this summer - particularly Scott Parker- show they are a club not willing to stand still and stagnate.

At only 25 years old, Michael Owen should have his best years in a Newcastle shirt. But the onus is now on Graeme Souness and his coaching staff to improve the supply lines for Owen and Shearer. This may take some time. Robert and Solano were big assist makers, and since their departure the goals for Newcastle have dried up. Luque will take time to adjust to the Premiership, and the rest of Newcastle's midfield has so far failed to convince that they are reliable assist-makers. The rumoured re-purchase of Solano would be an excellent move to revive the assists potential at the club.

The bottom line is that Newcastle now own that very rare commodity: a footballer in his prime whose natural attribute is to regularly find the back of the net. The stats speak for themselves:
32 goals in 70 games for England;
158 goals in 297 games for Liverpool;
16 goals in one season for Real Madrid.

For his goal scoring potential and the effect his presence will have on the rest of the team, Michael Owen must be the buy of the summer.


Blogger RedsMan said...

He is their best potential signing this summer, I'm not sure about best buy until the end of the season. His lowest tally in one season, apart from his debut year 1997, was 11, his most were two seasons of 19 goals. It is little wonder NUFC are excited to have him, and to score 16 mostly coming off the bench is fantastic too. The fact is in keeping Owen regularly playing football, and supplying him with the passes often enough, he will create chances.

Another good thing for Newcastle is that he is keen to get back into regular first-team action. Newcastle are keen to get scoring. Put the two together and both the player and the club are winners.


8/31/2005 4:37 pm

Blogger T said...

An addendum to my article: last night Newcastle secured the transfer of Nolberto Solano from Aston Villa for £1.5m.

So not only have Newcastle bought themselves a great goal-scorer this week- but they have also bought a great supplier of goals from the wing, corners, and free-kicks. Good week for Newcastle.

Aside from Newcastle, one transfer that caught my eye was Dario Silva signing for Portsmouth. An electric, lean striker from Uruguay with bleach blonde hair- he has been reasonably prolific in la liga for a number of years. At 33 yrs, whether or not he is past his best only time will tell.

Are there any other transfers that has caught your eye?

9/01/2005 10:49 am

Blogger RedsMan said...

David Connelly has proven to be quite a scorer in the Championship for Leicester and West Ham, sounding like another Dougie Freedman. Wigan have gradually added to their squad as best they can, not outstretching their budget and going for bigger names (that's NOT a shot at Newcastle!).

Wilfred Bouma impressed me in Euro2004 and he was another Dutch centre-back I considered for Liverpool but Aston Villa took him.


9/02/2005 11:57 am

Blogger Skippy said...

I think this is a bad move for Owen, he will not win any major trophies with Newcastle.

Newcastle have signed a very good striker, but they paid far too much money for him.

They have done a good deal with Solano.

I am surprised that they sold Jenes.

9/04/2005 2:46 pm


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