Date: 31st May 2006 at 10:01am
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Sir Alex Ferguson may have taken the rath of the nation for questioning England’s handling of Wayne Rooney in their quest to get him fit for the World Cup.

But now Freddy Shepherd and Glenn Roeder have joined forces to slam the England camp after another injury scare involving Michael Owen could see the player risked without involving Newcastle United.

The Toon chairman was livid when he only heard of Owen’s scan on a tight thigh … not from the England manager … but via the media!

Owen, who has been nursed back to fitness by United since breaking his metatarsal on New Year’s Eve at Tottenham, has played just 29 minutes for United this year.

Shepherd: ‘I am disappointed that no-one within the England camp informed us immediately of the situation regarding Michael on Monday.

‘To be the last to know, via the media, is certainly disappointing, especially after we have kept the England camp informed all the way about Michael’s fitness since he first injured his foot.

‘We have done all we can to get Michael fit to play a big part for England at the World Cup finals this summer. We’ve co-operated all the way along with England to help Michael, and that’s why this is disappointing.

‘We’ll be making our feelings known and seeking an explanation from the England team management plus reassurances that this doesn’t happen again.’

Roeder was also far from happy with the situation and believes that there was a major breakdown in communications from Sven-Goran Eriksson’s coaching staff.

Roeder: ‘Every experienced manager at top club level would be disappointed if they did not hear about this. We feel the same way here at Newcastle. I agree with the chairman and the very least we expect is a phone call to apologise about it.’