Allardyce: Owen is okay
Sam Allardyce was a relieved man after Michael Owen apparently came through his plastic pitch test in Moscow.
By Peter Fraser
Last Updated: 18/10/07 3:40pm
Newcastle manager Sam Allardyce was a relieved man after Michael Owen apparently came through his plastic pitch test in Moscow unscathed.
Owen was a member of the England side which crashed 2-1 to Russia in Euro 2008 qualification on Wednesday and there had been fears he was risking injury on the artificial surface at the Luzhniki Stadium.
The 27-year-old has recently undergone hernia surgery and it was thought the injury could be aggravated by playing on the surface.
However, Owen appears to have come through the encounter unscathed, much to the relief of Allardyce.
"I have not had a call, so it sounds like he's okay," said Allardyce.
The St James' Park boss has also been buoyed ahead of Newcastle's Premier League clash with Tottenham on Monday by the form of Obafemi Martins.
The Nigerian scored both his country's goals in their friendly draw with Mexico last weekend and Allardyce has admitted his delight at welcoming Martins back without injury.
"It was great to see Oba score two goals in Mexico" Allardyce added.
"Obviously the long trip to Central America was my main concern for him.
"He will be delighted to get two goals, but after trailing all of the way to Mexico and back, I am just glad he didn't have a game in midweek and it was over by the weekend.
"Scoring two will give him a lot of confidence because he missed a couple in recent games.
"Hopefully it will help him to improve that area of his game and his ratio of chances and goals increases. He would then be a major force in the Premier League."