Date: 17th November 2008 at 8:30pm
Written by:

In what many fans saw as one of the worst matches played at SJP, it was a less than happy Joe Kinnear who spoke to the media after the game, saying:

“It was highs and lows, wasn’t it? That’s the worst we have started since I have been here, in the first half. We went for broke with three strikers up and created numerous chances. We should have put the game to bed, really.

I don`t think we started well and the first goal took the wind out of our sails. It bobbled up and Ryan Taylor hit it with the outside of boot. It was the worst possible start. We didn`t really pass the ball too well. We didn`t create that much.

I said a few harsh words at half-time and kept my head later on. I told them they were there for the taking if we played higher up the pitch. We then created chances and Michael Owen had a great one prior to him scoring.

I didn`t think we had to give the corner away to start with, but we did. When the ball came in he had a free header, which was annoying. Damien Duff had the chance to get it off the line and he hooked it into the other corner of the net.

I put my arm round Damien and told him not to worry about it. He made the effort that he could. He`s bitterly disappointed, being the really good professional that he is. We have got to sit down and talk to him about a new contract (with Owen), if I am allowed to do that.

I’d say he (Owen) is about 80 per cent. He needs to be brought back gently. We know what Michael is capable of. No one asked these questions when we beat Aston Villa. Michael Owen is the best player at the football club. I have to make these decisions.

Which ever decisions I make are never right. I took off Spiderman (to boos from the crowd) and you will have a field day with that. It is a difficult job making decisions isn’t it? Whatever decision I make you’ll go against it.”