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Michael Owen To Leave Newcastle On A Free Transfer?

LFW Autumn 2006: Philip Treacy for Umbro

This morning the News of the World printed a story that will strike fear through most Newcastle United fan’s hearts; their most expensive player, Michael Owen, could be leaving them for £16 million less than he cost. Owen, believed to be earning £120, 000 per week, is refusing to renew his contract with Newcastle, because they will not continue to pay him his current salary. Owen is thought to be happy to stay with the magpies, his only qualm being his salary.

As the News of the World correctly said, if a new deal has not been signed by January other teams will be free to court the Newcastle striker, and provide more than enough money to keep Owen happy. Newcastle do have the option to form a damage limitation strategy and sell him off cheaply before next summer comes around, but even then they will still have made substantial losses.

Many would argue that salary should not be an issue if you’re earning over £30, 000 per week, so is Michael Owen being selfish and unreasonable to expect a six figure payment every week? The Newcastle captain will see other club talismans being paid a stupid amount and expect the same himself; Ronaldo is also believed to be earning £120,000 per week.

If Michael Owen were to leave on a free transfer it would be a huge blow to Newcastle’s morale. The Toon accepted him from the off and he has been treated as one of their own. The fact that Keegan decided to make him captain would be the straw that broke the camel’s back in terms of the Newcastle contingent feeling as if Owen’s departure was a personal betrayal of their trust. Owen would, and perhaps will turn into a hate figure whenever he visited St James Park.

If Owen does leave, where will he go? Being a former Liverpool player it seems unlikely that Manchester United will go for him, so perhaps Liverpool will treat Owen as a prodigal son and welcome him back with open arms. It seems likely to me though, that it will not be a top four club who would take Owen on, because of him being prone to injury, but perhaps a club challenging for a UEFA cup spot, such as Blackburn, or Man City.

There seems to be a good chance of this going either way, but if you pushed me I would say that I think that there is a bigger chance of Owen staying than going, only because I think that Newcastle will buckle to his wage demands as they do not want to lose their prize asset.

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  2. Kevin

    August 25, 2008 at 11:55 am

    wow tough crowd in here, regardless this is good news, and good news for Obafemi Martins who wasn’t utilized properly under Big Disappearing Sam last season. With Mark Viduka currently not featuring into the Newcastle offense the spotlight is finally positioned solely upon the Nigerian striker dynamo

  3. Davies

    August 25, 2008 at 4:44 am

    Stories like this are only “sensational” or “exclusive” if you are the first to print them. This is plain old fashioned recycled boring reactionary crap. Well done, have a doughnut.

  4. Steve Darlo

    August 24, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    Complete and utter rubbish poorly reseached and based on hearsay. This so called reporter will working for a red top taboild soon as print rubbish like this. ps Kaka is going to sign for the toon on wednesday for 70m LOL

  5. Bob

    August 24, 2008 at 6:38 pm

    In fact you’re about as believable as your adverts. Good grief what an awful site. I would urge all NUFC fans to avoid this place. They earn rewards based on hits and adverts clicked. One good piece advice I heard is to complain to the advertisers – soon gets them thinking

  6. azza

    August 24, 2008 at 6:26 pm

    Dominic Mather you just made your job safe for another day ? a SOURCE has told me scumderland want kaka print it tomoro

  7. Bob

    August 24, 2008 at 6:17 pm

    So what you’re actually saying is that the transfer rules haven’t changed from last year. We all know how it works, if he doesn’t sign he’s free to negotiate away in January. What is news here exactly? Nothing that Newcastle fans didn’t know already.
    Pointless article

  8. lameduck

    August 24, 2008 at 6:16 pm

    The story is typical of most English Red Top tabloids – there has been no official comment made by either NUFC or Michael Owen so of course they have to speculate in order to create a story. As usual they qualify this by using the time old – a source close to – this source probably being the reporting journalists granny.

    In fact if all speculation were outlawed and papers were only allowed to report those stories for which they had hard facts then the sports pages in Englandwould be confined to 3 columns and a couple of pictures.

    Shame really beacuse it does try hard to become a self-fulfilling prophecy, and given the nature of sport and money, it quite often does.

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