MICHAEL Owen has declared Alan Shearer’s return to Newcastle United was the best thing the club could have done as they try to escape from relegation.
Owen and Shearer’s friendship goes back almost 12 years when they were England team-mates under Glenn Hoddle, and the Newcastle captain made no attempt to hide his happiness at Shearer’s appointment as manager.
With eight games left to play, Newcastle are worryingly two points adrift of safety, but Owen feels the whole mood has changed since Shearer’s arrival.
He said: “Alan Shearer’s appointment as Newcastle United manager is just what we needed to give us that extra injection of confidence and enthusiasm, and everyone has certainly had an extra spring in their step since the announcement was made in midweek.
“It’s exciting, and it’s given the whole place a buzz. There are not many people who could come in and affect the club like this, but Alan is certainly one who can and the proof has been there even before we face Chelsea this afternoon.
“Everybody’s in a great frame of mind, and now if we go out on the pitch (against Chelsea) and get a positive result, the whole thing can snowball.
“For my part, I’m really delighted to see Alan here as manager. I watched his career when I was a kid, I admired him as a player, and then I got the chance to play alongside him with Newcastle three or four years ago, which was great for me.
“Now it’s come full circle and here I am playing for him as my manager! Who would have thought it?”