Type in Michael Owen on google and the first thing that comes up under the suggestions is ‘Michael Owen twitter.’ That pretty much sums up the striker these days – the only thing more fitting would be if the word ‘injury’ replaced that of twitter.
Owen is currently without a club, and given the very few times he has actually played this season, perhaps a brochure a little thicker than the previous 32 paged one that lured in Fergie like the real Ronaldo to a pie, with phrases such as ‘fit and healthy.’ Now phrases such as ‘prolific tweeter’ or even ‘knowledgeable about racehorses’ could be used to attract his next suitor.
In all seriousness, what was a once great player is now struggling to find a taker – and given his injury record and wage demands this is no real shocker. If there was a guarantee that Owen could stay fit, there would be a massive difference in the interest for the player.
A player like Owen does not lose his instinct for goal – no matter how old or injury prone, but pace does fade and Owen is now in the final days of his career, with the question of retirement lingering in the minds of the doubters – and perhaps even the player himself.
Yes it would be a shock to go from training with the likes of Scholes and Rooney each day, but coaching would not be out of the question, nor would punditry should the likeable player wish to keep his finger in the game.
To get Owen to play a full schedule of 38 games seems about as possible as Gary Neville putting on a Liverpool shirt, and short of wrapping him up in cotton wool after every game, there are few out there who believe the player could do this – in fact he would probably find a way to injure himself from the wool.
Of course Owen tells us that he is not going to fall at the final hurdle and there are clubs interested in him for one final contract, yet with the wish to stay close to home, again that narrows down the list of suitors, with Stoke being the ones who are linked the most heavily, yet the style of play and mentality at the Britannia is a wold away to what the player is used to.
Bitter former fans of Owen aside, most would agree the player is not motivated by greed and genuinely feels he has something to give to a team. Whether that is on the field on a Saturday or putting out the cones on a Monday however remains to be seen.