Owen Set For Emotional Anfield Return

Last updated : 21 December 2005 By Footy Mad - Editor

Ironically, the last time Michael Owen played at Anfield was against Newcastle in the final game of the 2003-04 season in the 1-1 draw before he moved to Real Madrid. He will be in the Toon side on Boxing Day for a fixture that must seem strange to him.

Owen: "When I knew I was coming back to the Premiership, I always thought it would be strange to go back to Anfield. But I'll deal with it when the game actually comes along - I'll cross that bridge when it comes. I've not thought long and hard about it yet, but I've got a picture in my head of what it will be like going back.

"It will be exciting seeing a lot of old friends, and it's something I'm looking forward to. It will be a strange one as I never thought I would leave Liverpool. I've been there since I was 11.

"I signed a four-year contract with Newcastle United and I'm very pleased with that decision. If we can keep improving and winning games and get the players on a roll, it will be an exciting place to play.

"I didn't come to a club that was top of the table. When I joined Newcastle they were second bottom and I came prepared for a fight. Fortunately, things have improved since then. We've been unfortunate with injuries, but when everyone's been fit the results have been quite good. We haven't got the biggest squad in the world, but what we have got is quite a bit of quality, and if we can keep everyone fit we can win more games than we lose.

"There's a gap between Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool and everyone else. Apart from those, I don't think there's anyone we should fear. Every year there's always one or even two teams that surprisingly get into the Champions League or a UEFA Cup place, so there's plenty to play for."