Killing hope forever: Michael Owen relegating Blackpool
We all knew he had it in him. With the eyes of a killer, Michael Owen stepped onto Darren Fletcher’s pass and killed hope forever today with the goal that ended Blackpool’s chances of staying in the Premier League for another glorious year. When the crisp, ageing smile flicked across his face as he watched the net bulge, it confirmed what we’d known for years: Owen is a baddie.
Even at Liverpool, he was never a popular man. As we’ve written here before, there’s something different about goalscorers; something cold, but Owen’s always been a special, special case. Owen has always had even more of an arrogance about him – the kind of thing that allows him to confidently predict “a big goal” even after a terrible season. It’s a level of delusion that inspires pity, rather than anger. Nevertheless, fans find it difficult to attach themselves to a man like that.
His moves between clubs have demonstrated a willingness to switch with bank account-related ideas in mind. In moving to a Real Madrid side already containing Ronaldo and Raul, Owen was never likely to get games. Sympathy surrounding his lack of time on the pitch seems to ignore the fact that he knew what he was doing when he moved. Still though, Madrid’s chances of winning things might have made an adequate justification for the transfer, had he not followed it up with a move to Newcastle. Newcastle: the richest club in the world not to win a proper trophy in the last 50 years. His move there was unlikely to have been for the love of winning – though, unfortunately, he has not mentioned it on Twitter.
To round off a career in transfers, England’s second top-scorer of all time made his way to Manchester United two summers ago. With his career dead in the water, he was hardly in a position to say no when Alex Ferguson came along with an offer, but, given the rivalry with Liverpool, the only club he has ever really fitted into, the move seems to fit nicely with the persona of a player carrying around a callous disregard for anything other than money and personal success. And horses.
All of this, though, is fine. Or it was fine. It was fine until he went and killed off Blackpool. In the biggest gesture towards cold-hearted capitalism since Shit Wars, the Phantom Menace, Owen finished off the only team in the Premier League who really were a bit fun to watch. Of course it’s petty to pin the blame on one man – and to send emails to friends comparing him to The Penguin, from Batman, was a bit far. What’s more, he was just doing his job – but isn’t that what the worst kind of person always seems to say?
Micheal Owen, ruining football since 1999.