Michael Owen has risked the wrath of Newcastle fans after saying that he never wanted to join the club and that it was the only regret in his career.
Owen said that he only joined Newcastle as he couldn’t move back to Liverpool and claimed they’re only a big club in terms of their fanbase and stadium. [Mirror]
Former Newcastle manager Sam Allardyce was on the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast show on talkSPORT (Tuesday, 8am) and said Owen never seemed happy at the club.
“It wasn’t surprising for me to hear Michael say those words,” Allardyce said. “In my time he never really looked comfortable and was, whenever possible, always flying down to Liverpool.
“It was never a comfortable move for him and I don’t know why he took it. Why did he come if he was so against it? Why didn’t he wait for a more suitable club? But there you have it. His time with me was more about, not him not wanting to play, but it was the fact it was very difficult to keep him fit and get him on the field.
“He didn’t play when Shearer asked him to play, and the big fallout came on the last day of the season against Villa when Shearer thought he could play and Michael didn’t think he could.”
It’s pretty obvious from what Allardyce has said that Owen wasn’t happy at Newcastle but why did he join them? The former Newcastle manager said that he was paid £120k-a-week when he signed and that would have made him one of the top three best-paid footballers in England at the time.
Owen signed for Newcastle from Real Madrid for £22.5m in the summer of 2005 and left four years later on a free to Man United – and was a huge disappointment.
He only played in 79 games over the four seasons, with a string of injuries keeping him out of the side for long periods of time. The infamous game against Aston Villa, when Shearer was manager, saw the club relegated after needing a point to survive.
Owen didn’t start the game but came on to no effect for the last 24 minutes as Newcastle lost 1-0. That was his last game for the club.
He was only 25 when he moved to Newcastle.
It was a huge shame for a player who promised so much when he burst onto the scene and ended up scoring 158 goals for Liverpool in 297 games.