Updated: Sunday, 12th July 2020 @ 9:02am

Ex-Manchester United striker Michael Owen admits Sir Alex Ferguson talked him into Old Trafford stay

Ex-Manchester United striker Michael Owen admits Sir Alex Ferguson talked him into Old Trafford stay

By Chris Bailey

Former Manchester United striker Michael Owen has admitted that the words of Sir Alex Ferguson convinced him to stay at Old Trafford for an extra year.

The diminutive frontman only managed four first-team appearances last term – his final involvement coming in November – but at the time felt that he was to be given more than a bit-part role.

But Owen, who also played for Newcastle United and Real Madrid, now accepts moving on 12 months earlier would have helped his career.

"I was on the bench a lot of the time, but then when the manager says 'you have a big role to play and we want you to stay for another year', it was great to hear that from someone like Sir Alex Ferguson," Owen said.

"In hindsight, probably with that extra year, it might have been better if I had moved in many ways."

Owen has since moved onto Stoke and feels that he will have more of an impact on his new club than his injury-plagued spell at United.

"I want to perform and I want to finish my career on a real high. I'm still only 32 and I still feel as if I have a lot left in me,” said Owen, who has spent most of the summer training alone.

"I've always scored goals no matter what team I have been in, so as long as I can stay fit and healthy, then I'm sure I can do that here at Stoke."

The ex-Liverpool forward hopes to face former rivals Manchester City, whom he famously scored an injury-time winner against, when Roberto Mancini’s men visit the Britannia Stadium on Saturday.

"I feel as if I am fit enough to take part in a game," Owen added.

For more on this story and many others, follow Mancunian Matters on Twitter and Facebook.