Michael Owen’s association with Real Madrid was brief and not much productive, but the former England international believes that he played a part in the Spanish club winning the Champions League on Saturday.
Owen left Liverpool for Madrid back in the summer of 2004. He was the new ‘Galactico’ in town and although on a personal level, he did not fare badly – 13 goals in La Liga is not a poor return - he failed to really spark at the Santiago Bernabeu and was sold in 2005.
Newcastle United paid Madrid £16.8 million to sign Owen, and soon after Sergio Ramos was snapped up by the Spanish club from Sevilla. At the time the Spain international was only 19 and was being hailed a teenage protégé, while the Englishman’s failure to settle in the Spanish capital and a trophy-less season for the club cost him his shot at glory. Part of the money Madrid got from the sale of Owen went to funding the move for Ramos, and the former Manchester United striker was quick to point this out on Saturday.
Owen’s career subsequently went downhill due to a succession of injuries, while Ramos has established himself as one of the best centre-backs in the world after creating a name for himself as one of the top three right-backs on the planet. On Saturday, it was the 28-year-old who equalised for Los Blancos against Atletico Madrid with a brilliant header in the third minute of extra time.
The match went to extra-time and Madrid eventually overpowered their city-rivals and Spanish champions 4-1 to win the Champions League for the first time since 2002. Owen reveled in the fact that his former club have conquered Europe once again and couldn’t resist taking a little credit for himself.
In a series of posts made on social networking site Twitter, the 34-year-old also hailed Madrid winger Gareth Bale for scoring his side's second goal of the match.
Nice to see the money used from the sale of me produce the goods! Real confirmed the signing of Ramos once they agreed to sell me. #GoodSwap— michael owen (@themichaelowen) May 24, 2014
If Atletico win this it will be a huge show of mental strength. The mental scar from conceding in the last minute is tough to get over.— michael owen (@themichaelowen) May 24, 2014
Fantastico!!! Buzzing for Gareth Bale.— michael owen (@themichaelowen) May 24, 2014
10 European Cups for Real Madrid. What a club.— michael owen (@themichaelowen) May 24, 2014