http://www.blogonthetyne.co.uk/

Cockney Press aim at Owen again but Shearer is no mug

By Lee Ryder on Apr 21, 09 09:28 AM

So hold on a minute, Michael Owen goes on a barren run, loses his England place and then has a bad game in London and suddenly he should be dropped for Newcastle United's game against Pompey.

Make no bones about it, Owen is suffering at the moment and is playing way below the level we all know that is locked away inside him.

But then again, name one Newcastle player who is pulling up trees at the moment?

The answer is nobody because the team has been drained of confidence and belief.

They are all suffering at the moment and the only reason that Habib Beye and Sebastien Bassong have stood out so much in the last two games, and they have done well, is because Newcastle have been under the cosh for so long.

The Toon stars are not immune from criticism by any stretch of the imagination.

And on board we have players who have played well for other clubs and failed to do the business here at Newcastle, in truth they have been a let down, Mark Viduka, Damien Duff and even Nicky Butt, by his own admission, haven't lived up to their reputations elsewhere.

And when you look at Obafemi Martins, a crowd favourite all the same, he is by far the poorest of Newcastle's number 9s during the Premier League years.

I don't think there is anybody who could say he's better than Alan Shearer, Andy Cole or Les Ferdinand.

But getting back to Owen, suggestions that Shearer does not have the bottle to drop his old pal are a nonsense.

Yeah, it would make a sensational story but Shearer understands better than anybody that if his best goalscorer isn't getting the service, then how the heck is he meant to score?

Owen has always been a poacher and although he isn't the lightning quick teenager he was when he burst on to the scene, he is still a major threat if used in the correct way.

His poor performance was as much down to those around him on Sunday than anything else.

I lost count of the amount of times that Ryan Taylor failed to get past the first defender from corner kicks.

Or the amount of time that R Taylor crosses were spat out by the Spurs defence and left unchallenged by any of the Toon's target men.

Shearer knows about goal droughts, he went almost two years without scoring for England before Euro 96 and then what happened?

He lost his form and had his patience tested by Ruud Gullit before Sir Bobby came in, and then what happened?

Then after a good first season under Sir Bob, he lost his form again, and then Newcastle signed the little man Craig Bellamy, and then what happened?

Things change for strikers and they go through barren runs.

Owen has 10 goals this season for Newcastle and to be fair his face has been tripping him.

Do you blame him? Has your face not been tripping you as well after this farce?

For what it's worth, Shearer would be wrong to drop Owen and certainly wrong to do it for the Cockneys.

But whether Owen is the right man for the captain's job is another matter.

Shearer was an all round battler in his day and in many ways a different type of player to Owen and probably more suited to the captain's role.

It could be argued that taking the armband away from Owen could lift some of the weight on his shoulders and let him get back to what he does best.

Yet for crying out loud, don't drop him now.

Don't drop him for this must win fixture against Portsmouth.

Shearer doesn't have time to get results and unlike Kevin Keegan last term he hasn't the time to get the confidence flowing.

But if Newcastle do finally turn the corner against Pompey, what price Owen plays a big part in it?alan-shearer.jpg


44 Comments

DavidK said:

100% in agreement with you for once Lee. We've gone well beyond the time for wholesale changes in the side, and dropping who is potentially the most effective weopon in what little armoury we have left is a fool's notion. Saying that, if three points are forthcoming from the match against Portsmouth, a man as shrewd as AS might give a run out for some of the individuals who've proved so effective in the reserves against Liverpool who already know what to expect from our existing first team squad and might be unsettled by mor unfamiliar opponents.

Mick Gilroy said:

Owen seems to be going (if not gone) the same way as Robbie Fowler, who was a great goal scorer, but then after injury and a couple of bad moves, was never the same player again, Liverpool having got the best out of him in his early twenties. The problem is not just with Michael Owen though, it is hard to see where any goals are going to come from at the moment,the entire team is so poor, so dropping MO is pointless as there is no one better to take his place. Alan Shearer hasn't really made any difference at all, although he is working his socks off trying to get it right. How come we never get the "new manager bounce" and run of good results other teams get when a new man comes in? Is this just the curse and bad luck that always affects NUFC??

Mick Gilroy said:

Owen seems to be going (if not gone) the same way as Robbie Fowler, who was a great goal scorer, but then after injury and a couple of bad moves, was never the same player again, Liverpool having got the best out of him in his early twenties. The problem is not just with Michael Owen though, it is hard to see where any goals are going to come from at the moment,the entire team is so poor, so dropping MO is pointless as there is no one better to take his place. Alan Shearer hasn't really made any difference at all, although he is working his socks off trying to get it right. How come we never get the "new manager bounce" and run of good results other teams get when a new man comes in? Is this just the curse and bad luck that always affects NUFC??

maltoon said:

owen might be struggling at min but give him some service and he our only hope of staying up.. has anyone blamed steve harper?? he been shocking and to blame for numerous goals. england class i dont think so, he just confirming why he been sat on backside for ten year. shay won us games harper doesnt.

ronnie lambert said:

We can't afford to drop MO, OM or MV at this desperate stage and yes chuck Nile Ranger and Kazenga on at Liverpool. Isn't Lua Lua a creative midfielder? I saw him come on in Keegan's first match at the Stoke cup game and he terrorised people with his speed and guile. Him and a few others are the future, but like James Milner and Rooney, should be blooded now. They couldn't possibly be worse than some of the sh!te on view like the very duff Duff and Ryan etc.

Nathan Hull said:

Owen has been terrible recently. He rarely looks interested, and offers very little unless someone can provide a pin point cross, or inch perfect through ball. He relies too heavily on other players in my opinion. Martins and Viduka may not be the best, but at least Viduka can hold the ball up and bring others into the game, and although Oba misses some guilt edge chances, he actually makes his own chances. At a top club Owen may still score for fun. With players like Jonas and Nicky Butt trying to set him up, it's no wonder he looks useless and should be dropped.

Pompey Rat said:

As a Pompey fan, I'd love you to drop Micky Owen

Cooper said:

You do know that Cockney doesn't describe all Londoners? It's a bit like using one term for the whole of the North East for example, and you Mackems should know how annoying that is!

National newspapers have reports on the antional sport all the time, even if they happen outside London you know, you should see the amount of coverage given to Liverpool and Manchester Utd. If you think you aren't getting much coverage unless playing a high profile team, it's probably because you are a pretty unsuccessful team with, arguably, a much higher media profile than your success deserves. If you were Everton you may have a point.

Get the chip off your shoulder, it's unbalancing your views.

Andy said:

Owen can't score due to lack of service.

Its evident we can't provide that service.

Therefore Owen is completely ineffective.

Hence he should not play. Is this not common sense?

Its like bringing a knife to a gunfight.

Frank said:

I can't believe you're bigging up MO and moaning about Oba. Oba did more in 30 minutes on Sunday than MO has done in about 12 games. Take your blinkers off, it's got nothing to do with the "cockney" press, it's got everything to do with the fact that playing with Owen, Butt and Ryan Taylor is like playing with 8 men. Oh but they're all English aren't they so we can't blame them. The problem is that Shearer is never going to drop Owen, and MO NEVER should be captain, give the armband to Beye, at least he looks as if he gives a damn.

AndyT said:

I agree that perhaps the armband should be taken away from Owen. For one thing to maybe give him less to worry about. But for more than anything else, he simply isn't an inspiring figure in any kind of way. Give the Captain's armband to Habib Beye!

Tottenham Dave said:

Sorry NUFC fans but your team played on Sunday like they had already accepted you are down. Even your fans were strangely quiet. I honestly thought you would come out and beat us just like you did last season but apart from the last 20 minutes Spurs barely had to break sweat. Your home games are not going to be easy and I really believe the only team that can save you is Hull as they have an awful run-in.
You are paying the price now for having a complete idiot as a chairman. The difference between our two clubs is that when Spurs were in trouble we went and got Redknapp and you went and got Kinnear.
PS - I would drop Owen. He is already on the beach.

bob h said:

Is this cockney press schtick not getting a little old ?

lawdy lawd said:

a lot of people want newcastle to go down because of this paranoid, racist cockney mafia talk. also your delusions of grandeur, fairweather fans(see att. figures in lower divisions for proof)and laughable reliance on idiotic and useless messiahs makes for extra reasons.by the way im irish and support the bohs so have no bias. a stint in the championship would do you good.

harpo said:

Maltoon,

You're talking out of your hat. Harps has done nowt wrong.

Shay was agreat servant but to blame Harps is just daft.

Johnny T said:

You could have Torres,Drogba and adebayor at the toon but with and ineffective midfield like ours they aint gonna score. We have no playmakers in midfield that can split defences or score/create goals. Owen is doing no worse than any other squad player so let him play and earn his wage

Stewart Douglass said:

Ofcourse Owen should be dropped and Viduka packed off to Australia. We cant provide Owen with the service he needs and Viduka simply is not fit, so replace them with Andy Carroll alongside Oba. At least we will have Oba's pace up front and Carroll's strength and aerial ability. Replace Ryan Taylor with David Edgar and bring in a midfielder from the Reserves as surely we have someone better than the current crop in the first team.
Finally dont blame Harper for the current position we are in, he has done nothing wrong

Stephen said:

Tottenham Dave makes a couple of valid points. I don't see how we are suddenly going to turn it on in the final three home games of the season and I am resigned to the fact that I will be watching Championship football next season. The reason is simple - the players are not good enough!

Dave Owens said:

"Get the chip off your shoulder, it's unbalancing your views."

Absolutely. It's tired and boring by now. Our problems don't lie with the 'cockney' press. You should spend less time worrying about what people outside the region say and more about what goes on at SJP. I've seen MO miss a lot of goals this season - same with Oba and the same with Shola. he midfield, especially the central midfield, has been awful for many years and this season it's finally come to a head with a Butt who is slow and frequently can't pass; he puts his defence in trouble (think of the incident with Coloccini against Sunderland) and can seldom link up with the forwards. We've signed a carthorse in Nolan ; we've signed a reserve player in Ryan Taylor who makes the occasional good pass but mostly doesn't and he has no sense of positional play - on top of that, he's been responsible for other teams scoring against us. Cockney Press? No, it's our lousy buying policy that, sadly, didn't just start under Ashley - think back to Bowyer, lazy Kluivert, Carl (Supermar)Cort, Bramble, Boumsong, Carr, Luque, Duff, and up to the present with Barton, Geremi, Cacapa, Smith, Viduka, Nolan, Coloccini, Taylor.

"You are paying the price now for having a complete idiot as a chairman. The difference between our two clubs is that when Spurs were in trouble we went and got Redknapp and you went and got Kinnear."

Couldn't agree more. That's what ought to be on the back page of the Chronic and on this blog.


Matt said:

While I agree the service has been poor I think Owen has to take his share of responsibility too, he doesn't seem to have the desire to get into the box, take Martins chance that he put over the bar near the end, when was the last time you saw Owen busting his gut to try and get to the ball in the box before 2 defenders?

Our best combination in attack at the moment is Martins and Viduka, the one has the hold up play with a good eye for a pass and the other has the pace and power to trouble defenders, Owen is without doubt the better finisher but if we haven't got the players to supply him then it could be a waste of time persevering with him.

I've got to say it was a daft decision to go with Carroll on Sunday considering the formation, I could understand it if we played with wingers who can get the ball in but with little width in the side he was wasted.

Good luck to Barton too who can still be a big player for us this season, his drive in midfield has been needed.

bob r said:

Cockney this, Cockney that. Blame it all on the Cockneys. Lee you are embarrassing the North East with your constant hamming up of your Geordie roots. You are making us look like insular fools who hate the rest of the country. Or is that how you really feel? Have you ever lived or mixed with anyone who isn't a Geordie? You should try it. You're pathetic response to any intelligent debate in the national papers about the problems at Newcastle, and the undoubted poor form of Michael Owen, is the real probelm journalism.
Please grow up (I doubt you'll public this) Perhaps you think it is from a Cockney and not a valid opinion)

Lee Ryder Author Profile Pagesaid:

Well Bob you really have thrown your toys out the pram with this one haven't you?
Does it say anywhere in it that I hate Cockneys?
It states that the southern based media have had a pop at Michael Owen and guess what?
They did.
An "intelligent debate", you must be having a tin bath!
If you can't see that see that the southern Press love to give Newcastle a hard time, you must have your head in the sand.
To answer your snotty questions, I have mixed with people who aren't Geordies as well, I went to study for four years in Preston, lived for over two years in Scunthorpe and then worked for over two years in Hartlepool.

Chris Gray said:

Lee - since you know Preston, Scunthorpe and Hartlepool so well, can you give us directions to their grounds please. We're going to need them ...

Cottage Dave said:

What is the difference between Alan Shearer & Newcastle United FC?
Mr Shearer will be on Match of the Day next season.

Lee Ryder Author Profile Pagesaid:

Scunny: From all Routes, M180: Leave the M180 at Junction 3 and take the M181 for Scunthorpe. At the end of this motorway, you will see the ground on your right. Turn right at the first roundabout, onto the A18, and then right again at the mini roundabout to enterthe ground.

Preston: From North: Take M6 then M55 to junction 1. Follow signs for Preston A6. After 2 miles turn left at the crossroads into Blackpool Road (A5085). Turn right after .75 miles into Deepdale.

Hartlepool: Down the A19 somewhere after Sunderland.....,.

DavidK said:

Watch out Lee, you're starting to show more fight than the Toon have all season.
I've just had a radical idea.
Let's try and get behind the whole squad in respect of staying up, then we can argue all summer as to who was most to blame.
Otherwise we'll have nowt to talk about apart from Cricket and Tennis.

Do we have a deal lads?

bob r said:

For a man who likes to dish out criticism it is becoming cleam Mr Ryder can't take any himself. You constant banging of the Geordie drum is tiresome. Your column panders to the lowest common demoninator, and can be summed up along the lines of I'm a better more loyal Geordie than you are. How about some constructive detailed, factual analysis of what is happening at Newcastle rather than rants about Cockney press people.
Grown up, Mr Ryder.

bob r said:

Lee, All becomes clear.... you were a student at the esteemed world renown Preston Polytechnic.
I wondered where you developed your literary flair. Eh? Oh aye, man. Wu divn't want to gan to them places like like Scunthorpe and preston next season du wu.

Lee Ryder Author Profile Pagesaid:

Is this meant to be criticism Bob?

Lee Ryder Author Profile Pagesaid:

No man Bob, it ceased being a Poly in 1992.
For a man who likes factual analysis I'm surprised you couldn't work it out, it's been called The Univeristy of Central Lancashire since then.
Anyway I wouldn't have been able to wear my flat cap or get my whippet in the bars in Cambridge or Oxford.

Michael Nee said:

You may as well play with 10 men with owen in the team, if shearer keeps playing him as him and owen are best mate's then shearer should not be the job, the manager should have friendship's with his manager.

Owen has scored 1 goal in 14 and our best performance of this year (v Arsenal) came with him on the bench.

Owen is the slowest centre foward I've ever seen for someone who's just turned 30, he's finished as a top-class centre forward and quite a few newcastle fan's can see it, he can't create anything for himself, he can't run and can't take defenders on.

The excuse that he's needs service is an old arguement, every newcastle fan will say we haven't had service at this club since robert and solano we're sold off.

Viduka and Martins completely changed the game on sunday and even Andy Gray (who's a awful commentator) pointed this out.

If owen is played ahead of martins and viduka then, shearer has to take responsability for the results that follow as 3 wins will keep us safe, as there's no way hull and boro are going to get to 39 points with their run-ins.

kieran said:

hull have picked up points all season and the smoggies got a result against liverpool recently wheras we have had no decent results unless you go back to the draw with man u more than 30 games ago

Stewart Douglass said:

Shearer's announcement today, that Owen will start against Portsmouth, is surely the final nail in the coffin. Championship football here we come.

ROBERT SMITH said:

This endless pointless debate about the Cockney press, the Geordie Nation and a lot of other dead brained rubbish is pointless. The problems that face NUFC have been caused by the ineffectual owners of the club. 50+ years of relentless mediocrity, no trophies etc. Now relegation - administration to follow shortly.

Tad Caster said:

"This endless pointless debate about the Cockney press, the Geordie Nation and a lot of other dead brained rubbish is pointless. The problems that face NUFC have been caused by the ineffectual owners of the club."

Agreed.

londontoon said:

Give Owen the service via good crosses and passes and he'll score. he is just back from injury and plays on confidence. it usually (sad to say that) takes him at least 3 games to get back into the swing of things..
put jonas and duff on the wings and fire those crosses in. please don't let ryan taylor put in another dead ball!! we need to at least be pushing for corners and free kicks around the area.

londontoon said:

lee i agree, the press would hate us to do well i think it scares them to death, yes most of them are prob from london, suppoters of the london clubs and yes they write stuff and a lot of people do believe, its what journalism is all about. personally i've not bought a national paper more than twice in the last 2 yrs for that exact reason.. I think we all remember JFK pointed it out nicley when he turned up..
if it didn't work every newcastle supporter would be behind MO to recover his goal scoring boots back him as shearer is backing him sing his name and let him know we support every single one of the NUFC team.. end of!

voodoo_chile said:

Why drop the one natural finisher and by a country mile the best striker at the club? we need goals badly so drop Owen? give me a break, the alternatives? Oba - he has pace and thats it, he cant trap a ball his positional sense is abysmal and he doesnt know the meaning of the word team.Viduka on his day is superb but only if he fancys it, in realty he is a fat lazy mercenary and Shola? nuff said. like it or not MO is our best chance of staying up because the other strikers are simply no good enough.

Bill said:

He came to Newcastle OWING, and left OWING,
The real OWEN was a MIRAGE

Profile

Lee Ryder

Lee Ryder - Proudly born and bred on Tyneside, the Chronicle's chief sports writer has followed the fortunes of the club over the last three decades as a Toon fan and football writer.

Latest Premier League video

Video

Email alerts

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

In association with

ESPN

Follow my RSS feed

Twitter

Follow me on

Lee Ryder's Twitter

Categories

Sponsored Links