Friday, August 12, 2005

Could Owen sign with Newcastle to stay on the English national squad?

I think a move to Newcastle for Michael Owen is still unlikely, but the Magpies' manager Graeme Souness is still keeping hope alive. On the possible deal, Souness said, "Without exciting the fans too much, I think there is a good chance." Adding, "...we know everything about Michael's situation - he is a target."

So why might Owen sign with a club that will not be playing in Europe and, even with his talent, with all odds finish in the bottom 10 of the EPL? Perhaps he is nervous about keeping his spot on the national team. Just today it was announced that Jermain Defoe will start in England's friendly against Denmark next Wednesday instead of Owen. I'm sure part of this move to allow Defow and Wayne Rooney to become more comfortable with each other ahead of next month's World Cup qualifier against Wales (Owen is suspended from that match). However, England have another qualifier a few days later and England's manager Sven-Goran Eriksson said, "Almost for sure I won't start (Owen in Copenhagen), though, so that makes Defoe rather interesting. It's a good opportunity for him to show that he's the right man to start against Wales."

Owen is still in a good spot, but if he is not getting the minutes with Real, which might cause Eriksson to give other plays a second or third look. Newcastle might be his best choice for getting the playing time he needs.


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