Michael Owen will not retire at end of season say Newcastle
15 May 2009 11:34
Shearer is convinced that Owen can rediscover his goal-scoring touch when Newcastle host Fulham at St James' Park to provide the perfect riposte to suggestions – dismissed by his representatives - that he is planning to quit football.
'The best way for him to respond is to out and score goals,' Shearer told reporters ahead of a training session at St James' Park.
'He always has the chance to have the last laugh and the answer is all he has to do is score goals.
'My mind will never change with Michael Owen - if you give him chances, eventually he will score goals, I have no doubt about that.'
Tyneside woke on Friday morning to suggestions, vehemently denied by his representatives, that the 29-year-old striker could be ready to hang up his boots after struggling to rediscover his form since his latest injury.
Owen, without a goal since the 2-2 draw with West Ham in mid-January, was withdrawn during the 3-1 win over derby rivals Middlesbrough on Monday with the score at 1-1, and could only look on as substitutes Obafemi Martins and Peter Lovenkrands secured victory.
As for claims that he was considering retirement, Shearer added: 'He doesn't need it, doesn't deserve it. The stories that are out this morning are totally ludicrous and totally untrue as far as he's concerned, and he has laughed them off. But Michael Owen is a big-name player and sometimes will attract headlines.'
The former Liverpool and Real Madrid striker, deemed surplus to requirements by England head coach Fabio Capello, is out of contract this summer.
Shearer is certain that his skipper still has what to remain a top-flight striker but his future remains uncertain.
'I am 100 per cent certain he will have a future in the Premier League,' Shearer added.
"But as to where that will be, here or elsewhere, that's for a discussion at the end of the season.'
Intriguingly, Owen was nowhere to be seen when the Newcastle training session got under way much to the frustration of the assembled cameramen and photographers.
Last night Owen's representatives scotched suggestion that he was thinking about leaving football for a career in horse-racing followi ng 12 years in frontline football.
'Any suggestion or unfounded speculation that Michael Owen has any intention of quitting football is totally untrue and wrong," read a statement from Wasserman Media Group.
'Michael remains as committed to his football career as he ever has been and is deeply offended that anyone should suggest otherwise.
'Michael Owen has instructed lawyers and will take action against any publication which he feels inaccurately or unfairly suggested he is quitting football and is damaging to his professional reputation.'