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Owen and Martins fight for one place

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From The Times

August 9, 2007

Owen and Martins fight for one place

 

 

Sam Allardyce has served notice on Michael Owen and Obafemi Martins, his two most explosive strikers, that they will be vying for a single place for much of the coming season. Describing Owen’s lingering fitness problems as the “biggest frustration,” of his short spell at Newcastle United, the manager predicted a new phenomenon at St James’ Park: competition.

 

A relentless rash of injuries have undermined Newcastle for the past two years, but having signed Mark Viduka on a free transfer, bought Alan Smith for £6 million and seen Shola Ameobi recover from hip surgery, Allardyce will, luck permitting, have five forwards to select from. Even though Smith will also feature in midfield, it may entail some ruffled egos.

 

Martins mustered 17 goals in his debut season in English football following his £10 million move from Inter Milan, while Owen, in spite of his rare appearances in a Newcastle shirt, remains the club’s record signing. Both are blessed with pace and both require good service; while Allardyce will, on occasions, field a 4-3-3 formation, will the pair form a natural partnership?

 

“I’m very happy with the five strikers I’ve got,” Allardyce said. “I think four is the minimum you go into a new season with and we have got a good variety. We can also use a bit of squad rotation and have competition for places, which is what you need for your frontmen.

 

“Oba was the main man last year because Michael was kept out with injuries, but they will be fighting with each other for a place in the side this season. Perhaps even the pair of them will play together with one of the big men on occasions as well.”

 

Owen’s absence with a thigh tear for much of pre-season is unfortunate. “When I arrived, one of the biggest worries was not knowing about Michael’s future, but since then the biggest frustration has been his niggling injuries,” Allardyce said. “He is still game short, not just in terms of pre-season, but all of last season as well. He has not played much football at all recently. It must be terrible for him.”

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No mention of Luque.

 

to be fair Big Sam only actually name checks Owen and Martins in that article anyway doesn't he? the journalist omits luque's name which might be a blessing the way which most journalists talk about him!

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He is quoted as saying “I’m very happy with the five strikers I’ve got” though:

Viduka

Smith

Owen

Martins

Shola

 

but he doesn't say smith will be used there. So he could mean 5 strikers inlcuding luque and the four others mentioned above and class smith as a midfielder which is where i believe he will be used most.

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He is quoted as saying “I’m very happy with the five strikers I’ve got” though:

Viduka

Smith

Owen

Martins

Shola

 

but he doesn't say smith will be used there. So he could mean 5 strikers inlcuding luque and the four others mentioned above and class smith as a midfielder which is where i believe he will be used most.

come to think of it maybe he classe luque as a left winger

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He is quoted as saying “I’m very happy with the five strikers I’ve got” though:

Viduka

Smith

Owen

Martins

Shola

 

but he doesn't say smith will be used there. So he could mean 5 strikers inlcuding luque and the four others mentioned above and class smith as a midfielder which is where i believe he will be used most.

 

 

that's my point :lol:

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