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Owen ready for new challenge at Stoke

While Roy Hodgson's England team experiments with their forwards, the forgotten man among England goalscorers was planning the revival of his career at Stoke City.

Fourteen years ago, Michael Owen announced his arrival on world football with a stunning individual goal against Argentina in the 1998 World Cup. Now he has a last chance to prove his Premier League credentials at unfashionable Stoke City.

The last two seasons have been a frustrating time of injuries and few first-team opportunities for Owen. Now the former Liverpool, Real Madrid and Manchester United striker says he is fit and ready to prove his ability all over again after joining Stoke as a free agent.

"I'm not sure what the manager has got in store," Owen said. "I feel as if I am fit enough to take part in a game. I'm not quite 100% confident or happy in my general touch and different bits and bobs, but that will come. I'd like to think I'll improve as the weeks go on."

Although it’s hardly as glamorous as his previous clubs, Owen felt that Stoke was the right choice. "There were a couple of Premier League teams that showed interest, but this is a team on the up. I know the manager and a few of the players and it meant I didn't have to move my family as well."

He is confident that, at 32, he can still contribute. "I want to perform and I want to finish my career on a real high. I've always scored goals no matter what team I have been in, and I'm sure I can do that here at Stoke."

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