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'My move to Newcastle was one I really regret' - Owen launches scathing attack on Magpies

10:56 BST 03/09/2019
Michael Owen Newcastle
The former England striker wanted to move back to Liverpool when he left Real Madrid and admits he should not have gone to the north east

Michael Owen has admitted his move to Newcastle was one of the biggest regrets of his career.

The former England striker was keen on a move back to Liverpool after his move to Real Madrid turned sour but the only offer accepted by the Spanish giants was from the Magpies under Graeme Souness.

But, in his upcoming book 'Reboot', serialised by the Mirror , Owen reveals: "My move to Newcastle was one I really regret - I should have followed my gut instincts from the start. I didn't want to go there - my heart was still set on a return to Liverpool.

"Liverpool couldn't match Newcastle's offer. From a career perspective, there was no doubt in my mind that a move to the North East was a downward step."

Owen, despite his reservations, became Newcastle's club-record signing in a £16.8 million deal he says saw him earn around £120,000 a week in 2005. 

Around 20,000 fans attended his unveiling but Owen soon realised his relationship with the fans was strained beyond repair after he re-watched a game on Match of the Day. 

“I could hear Newcastle fans, my fans, singing 'what a waste of money!' as I'm being stretchered off," Owen continued.

"I can't deny their actions that day changed things for me. No longer was I even going to attempt to ingratiate myself with the fans. Instead, I flipped it in a slightly more resentful way thinking, I don't need to justify myself to f****** Newcastle fans."

Owen feels the club are only a 'big club' due to the size of their supporter base rather than for any success on the pitch. 

“This kind of blind delusion is especially true of Newcastle United – which, as I reach for the nearest tin hat, is only a big club in the sense that it has a lot of fans and a big stadium,” he added.

“They're historically not successful off the pitch, in fact quite the opposite mostly. And they've never really won much on it in recent times."

Owen spent four years in the north east before joining Manchester United and rounded off his career with Stoke in 2012-13.