Date: 24th April 2009 at 10:47am
Written by:

Tony Cascarino, pundit for the New Football Pools says Michael Owen is like a passenger at Newcastle.

‘I`m afraid Newcastle are now paying the cost of terrible decision making at the club for the past two years. Every decision made seems to have been contrary to what was actually needed. I`ve nothing against Alan Shearer but the decision to go for yet another big name to get them out of trouble was an awful one.

Big names don`t keep clubs in the Premier League and the appointment of Shearer was a huge risk. Newcastle face some massive games, none more so than Portsmouth this weekend which if they don`t win, they stand next to no chance of surviving.

Having watched the last 3 Newcastle games, one thing`s for certain, Michael Owen is not contributing in any way, shape or form. When you are down in a relegation scrap you need players willing to roll up their sleeves and fight which Michael is not doing. In fact, he has hardly had a kick, let alone a shot.

Newcastle can`t carry players in this predicament which is what they are basically doing with Owen. At the moment they are playing with 10 men and that just can`t happen. Don`t get me wrong, when Michael is fit and on form then he is a predator but he`s not looking like either at the moment and Obafemi Martins looks a better bet to play.

The Nigerian hasn`t scored for a while but he is at least he`s a handful, he`ll run at players, shoot from distance and the threat his pace provides is what Newcastle need. Martins produced far more than Owen did in his substitute appearance at Tottenham and Shearer needs to make a brave decision and drop Michael.

The situation for Newcastle is that dire that even a win won`t get them out of the drop zone. They need back to back results and in the form they are in, that`s a big ask. If teams around them get results this weekend the situation will look even worse. So the Portsmouth game is a definite must win just to keep the hope of survival alive.”

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