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I don’t know whether we have to feel grateful or not, but Spurs number one will missed a trip to St. James’ Park on Monday. While Newcastle will all fit except Mark Viduka and Alan Smith are the reguler team members that have their own reason to miss the match.
Spurs will also missing some of their first team squad with Ricardo Rocha (ankle), Kevin-Prince Boateng (ankle), Benoit Assou-Ekotto (knee) and Ledley King (knee) while Anthony Gardner (thigh) and Teemu Tainio (thigh) will have to wait until Sunday for their match fitness.
Beside Paul Robinson, I thought we have benefit with Ledley King’s knee injury. Spurs back four will be soft without King, and with the pace of Owen and Oba, Newcastle will have more opportunities to scores.
The only Spurs player that either Caçapa, Faye or Rozehnal must have to take more attention is Darren Bent.Newcastle squad are mostly in ready to action condition. Allardyce feels relief that his club’s international contingent have all returned from this week’s games unscathed.
The only problem that might bothering him is our front-liners. As Shola Ameobi and Mark Viduka will have to continue their recoveries from groin and calf complaints, Big Sam is preparing Owen and Martins to line up together. The pair have one game together this season as a starter.
“I like to think that a partnership between Michael and Obafemi could work – I hope so,” said Allardyce. It was widely known that Allardyce is the admirer of Big & Little striker pair, but later he added that with a little switch of Newcastle’s game play, both Owen and Oba could be the most lethal partnership in Premier League.
“Both are talented players, both are good individuals. What we need, what we’re trying to find is a partnership.”
Allardyce also aware of the Double-O physical appearance. He added more that United will not playing aerial balls down the middle but need to playing it to feet. With Owen and Martins presence in front, the ball should have to go through midfield and placing the ball into feet to maximize the speed of both Owen and Martins.
Big Sam also happy to welcome Joey Barton for his competitive match debut with the first team. Barton will be a usefull addition while Alan Smith is being suspended.
With Joey’s har working style of play, Big Sam can have a gurantee that he will strengthened the United’s midfield area. His attacking instict will also be a plus for the team.