Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has warned new striker Michael Owen that he faces a wait before becoming more involved in things at Old Trafford, reports Ian Ladyman in the Mail. The Scottish legend, speaking at a press conference in Turkey ahead of this week’s Champions League clash with Besiktas, told the striker, who hoped the move to Old Trafford would see him regain his form and status as England’s main striker, that he would have to wait for his chance at the club;
‘He has not been involved much and I explained that to him,’ Ferguson stated . ‘The season has not really started. Because of the internationals we are not really playing Saturday-Wednesday.
‘So Owen doesn’t come into the equation because we are trying to get a blend of Dimitar Berbatov and Wayne Rooney. Owen will play plenty of games, just maybe not early in the season.”
The United boss signed Owen to guarantee the club goals after a disappointing return last season saw United net fewer goals during their league campaign than in seasons past. That and the loss of Cristiano Ronaldo during the summer meant that Sir Alex was hoping that Owen, along with fellow strikers Dimitar Berbatov and Wayne Rooney, could grab a greater number of goals and Wayne Rooney’s excellent goal scoring start to the season has impressed the United boss who singled out the striker for special praise;
‘Rooney has started well, that’s the first thing to say. We need a couple of players to get us more than 20 goals as our goal ratio last season was very poor. We only scored 68 league goals. It was an unusual one, but Wayne has five league goals already this campaign and that’s terrific.’
For the game tonight against Besiktas, Ferguson is expected to rely on veteran defender Gary Neville, whose experience may well prove vital in the cauldron atmosphere in Turkey while Park Ji Sung, fresh from news of a new contract keeping him at Old Trafford for three more years, could also play from the start. As United begin their latest campaign in Europe, Ferguson has high hopes that his team can learn from last season’s disappointment in the final and take that one step further to achieve Champions League success, with, or maybe even without, the goals from Michael Owen.
‘If we keep our heads, we should qualify. When we get to the later stages we can start to think about getting to the final in Madrid and the material is there (to win it). If we win it, it will not be the team that wins it, it will be the squad.
‘It’s not easy to win it, as we found out (against Barcelona). One mistake in a game like that and you’re crucified. Remember that. One mistake. Dead.’
Is Sir Alex right to keep Michael Owen on the bench? Will Wayne Rooney’s fantastic goalscoring start to the season continue and is this Manchester United squad capable of lifting the European Cup this season, as Ferguson hopes, or is he deluding himself?
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience