'I'm Shear that he'll be playing next season'

Alan Shearer has denied rumours that Michael Owen will be retiring at the end of the season, although he didn't say whether the goal-shy former England hero will be staying at Newcastle next season. Newcastle fans are presumably hoping not.

'He doesn't need it, doesn't deserve it,' said the pundit-turned-Geordie Messiah. 'The stories out are totally ludicrous and untrue as far as he's concerned, and he has laughed them off.

'He always has the chance to have the last laugh. My mind will never change with Michael Owen - if you give him chances, eventually he will score goals, I have no doubt about that.

'I am 100% certain he will have a future in the Premier League. But as to where that will be, here or elsewhere, that's for a discussion at the end of the season.'

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