Big Sam fears Martins exit
By Lewis Rutledge
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Sam Allardyce is hoping to convince Obafemi Martins to stay at Newcastle.Sam Allardyce is hoping to convince Obafemi Martins to stay at Newcastle.
The Nigerian has a £13million get-out clause in his contract and has been linked with Arsenal following the sale of Thierry Henry to Barcelona.
With speculation also rife about Michael Owen's future on Tyneside, Allardyce plans to sit down with Martins next week and outline his ambitious vision for The Magpies.
He told Sky Sports News: "All I can say from the club's point of view and mine is that it is only speculation because we have had no official contact from anybody at Arsenal at the moment.
"Everybody knows about the clause situation he has - that leaves us in a very poor position as a football club.
"We are left in a very precarious position regarding that. All the speculation that is flying around is difficult to cope with, but it is something we will have to try to find out over the next few days.
"When Oba comes back, we will sit down and say, 'What exactly is the situation?' and if he has any problems, try to resolve them and hopefully persuade him Newcastle is the place for him next season."
Allardyce has no such plans to meet with Owen, as he is confident of keeping the England striker.
"I don't think there is any need to speak to Michael - that was all covered weeks and weeks ago, as far as I was concerned.
"There has been no speculation regarding Michael since then. Now it has moved on to Oba and when that sort of clause is inserted in a contract, those are the sort of players that bring up more speculation than everybody else."