Waddle- Don't Knock Owen!

Last updated : 28 January 2008 By Footy Mad - Editor

Chris Wadle: "Kevin is short of a couple of players and, for me, his priority is midfield.

"You look at Michael Owen when he was at his best - he had Steven Gerrard behind him.

"These are the players we've got to find. Somebody who is going to score from midfield. Gerrard gets loads of goals, and so does Frank Lampard.

"People like Cesc Fabregas could end up with 15 goals this season.

"At United, it seems to be the back four and the strikers, and nothing in between.

"Everything seems to go long because they don't go through midfield.

"I don't see them passing forward. Kevin's got to get some players in the middle of the field - players like Michael Carrick or Owen Hargreaves.

"Then you've got to get players who can get goals like Gerrard and Lampard. The Rob Lee-type role.

"If Michael Owen is going to score goals, it's not going to be by hitting balls from the back.

"Nicky Butt, Geremi and Joey Barton are all similar players. You need variation. Who is going to create?

"Kevin wants to challenge the big four, but it's not going to happen overnight.

"Years ago, you could sign Les Ferdinand for £6m, and the other clubs would say 'wow'.

"You can't do that any more, and it's going to be hard. About nine clubs can buy those players now.

"When United signed Alan Shearer for £15m, every other club thought - we can't pay that.

"Now that seems to be the going rate - look at Marlon King going for £5m. Everton paid £11m for Yakubu.

"It's going to be hard to get the players to say 'I want in'.

"You're going to have to pay over the odds.

"There's talk of Shaun Wright-Phillips - and he cost Chelsea £22m. That's a lot of money.

"The scouting network is important. You've got to ask how does Arsene Wenger pick them up?"