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Would Souness be playing Michael Owen?


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Running, twisting and turning, and now Owen's even striking the ball.


Which poses the question: If Souness was manager, how much closer would Owen be to a comeback?


And by asking that question, you realise that things at the club could be so much worse.

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Michael Owen says he has suffered no setbacks in his recovery from knee surgery, but is aware that he is approaching the 'business end' of his rehabilitation.


Owen has not featured for Newcastle since suffering a serious knee injury on World Cup duty with England last summer.


The forward has undergone two operations on his knee and took a step forward in his rehabilitation earlier in February when returning to running training.


Owen says he is on schedule to return this season, but is aware that he needs to guard against getting carried away and suffering a setback.


"The latest is so far so good," Owen told Sky Sports News. "There have been no hiccups.


"I am running in straight lines and kicking balls. I am not blasting the ball into the net or anything like that, but kicking the ball and passing and running in straight lines is where we are at the minute.


"We will develop that into smacking a ball and twisting and training and if everything goes well I can play again this season.


"With long-term injuries you can have problems coming back, my legs need to be tuned in to running and kicking balls regularly and once we get that it will be fine.


"In the grand scheme of things I need to make sure it is right as I have a long career ahead of me.


"I have had two major operations and I am convinced I am in the right hands to get things right.


"Everything has gone like clockwork so far, but we are getting towards the business end."

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