Shola Ameobi

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Shola Ameobi
Shola Ameobi 1.png
Ameobi warming up for Newcastle United in 2008
Personal information
Full name Foluwashola Ameobi[1]
Date of birth (1981-10-12) 12 October 1981 (age 32)[2]
Place of birth Zaria, Nigeria
Height 1.91 m (6 ft 3 in)[3]
Playing position Forward
Club information
Current club Newcastle United
Number 23
Youth career
1995–2000 Newcastle United
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2000– Newcastle United 309 (52)
2008 Stoke City (loan) 6 (0)
National team
2000–2003 England U21 20 (7)
2012– Nigeria 5 (2)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 19 April 2014.

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 18 November 2013

Foluwashola "Shola" Ameobi (born 12 October 1981) is a professional footballer who plays for Newcastle United as a striker. Born in Nigeria but raised in England, Ameobi was capped by the England under-21 team before making his Nigeria debut in 2012. He is the older brother of fellow footballers Tomi and Sammy.[4] Ameobi has made more appearances for Newcastle than any other current player at the club, and received a winner's medal in 2010 when the team lifted the Championship trophy.

Early life[edit]

Born in Zaria, Nigeria to a family from Ijumu Local Government Area in modern day Kogi State, Ameobi moved to Newcastle upon Tyne, England when he was five. His initial promise was spotted whilst attending the Walker Central Boys Club, before he was invited to attend Newcastle United's Academy. [2]

Home Life[edit]

When Shola isn't on the football pitch, he likes to make time for some of his other passions, the main ones of which being interior design and unique furnishings. Shola takes much of his inspiration from things he sees outside his window and things that he has seen in bars. One of Shola's most treasured furnishings is his unique painting of Dan Yeowart. The nude portrait, bar glasses, is adorned with an array of coloured disco lights. A piece, by Shola's own admission, that "you don't see many of those knocking about". Additionally, Shola has admitted to being something of an addict when it comes to computer games, listing his favourites as 'Silent Hill', 'Assassin's Creed' and 'FarCry 2'[5]

Club career[edit]

Ameobi signed a pre-contract with Newcastle on 1 July 1997.[2] He progressed through the youth setup, making his debut in the reserves in 1998 on 11 October against Sunderland. He made his first team debut two years later, 9 September 2000, in a home game against Chelsea.[2] He went on to make 22 appearances for Newcastle that season,[2] in lieu of the injured Alan Shearer and Carl Cort.[2]

The 2002–03 Champions League saw some of Ameobi's finest performances including an equalising goal against FC Barcelona in a 4–1 defeat at the Nou Camp[6] as well as scoring two goals against Bayer Leverkusen in a 3–1 victory.[7]

His erratic form has earned him some criticism in the past, and although never having been claimed as a prolific goalscorer, many of his games were as a substitute.[citation needed] Due to injuries in the latter stages of the 2005–06 season, Ameobi gained a regular starting place, and scored six goals in Newcastle's last 12 Premier League games.[citation needed]

In the 2006 UEFA Intertoto Cup, Ameobi scored twice in Newcastle's away tie at Lillestrøm SK (3–0),[8] taking him to second place in the club's table of leading goalscorers in European competition with twelve goals, behind only Shearer.[9]

During the 2006–07 season, Ameobi needed a hip operation, a problem which had been plaguing him for two seasons. Newcastle's shortage of match-fit first team strikers during the previous season had forced him to be postpone this surgery.[10] The problem eventually forced Glenn Roeder to send Ameobi for surgery two months before the transfer window, making the 0–0 draw away game to Manchester City his last game and ruling him out for the rest of the season.[citation needed] He had made 13 appearances (three as a substitute) and scored five goals.[citation needed]

Ameobi and the Newcastle medical team reported his hip operation in the United States was a success and that the club doctors and medical staff would work on his rehabilitation.[citation needed] It was originally thought that he would not be fit to play until the start of the 2007–08 season, but his rehabilitation progressed quickly and he returned with three games remaining in the season, clocking approximately 30 minutes of match action against Reading[11] and making a further two appearances.

However, after failing to impress Newcastle manager Sam Allardyce,[12] or Kevin Keegan[13] on 27 March 2008, Ameobi agreed a loan deal with Stoke City until the end of the season, to help their promotion campaign. It is understood that a loan fee of around £500K was agreed and that a possible permanent transfer was also discussed subject to Stoke winning promotion.[14] Ameobi made his debut for Stoke against Sheffield Wednesday on 29 March, the game ended 1–1. After playing for six games and not managing to score, Ameobi returned to Newcastle, and Stoke decided not to sign him permanently.[15]

On 14 August, Ipswich Town manager Jim Magilton confirmed that the club were in talks with Ameobi and that the club were keen to get the deal finalised as long as Ameobi was willing to play in the Championship. However, on 17 August, Ameobi failed a medical, showing hamstring problems, and the deal collapsed.[16]

Ameobi warming up on the sidelines against Ipswich Town in 2010.

Due to long term injuries to Mark Viduka and Alan Smith,[citation needed] as well as shorter term injuries to Michael Owen and Obafemi Martins,[citation needed] Ameobi was able to start the 2008–09 season in the first team squad. He managed to score his first goal in two years for Newcastle in a 2–2 home draw with Manchester City on 20 October.[17] After the match, interim manager Joe Kinnear praised Ameobi and backed him to kick-start his career.[18] He followed this up with a goal in his next game away to Sunderland in a 2–1 defeat on 25 October.[19] He signed a new deal with the club in January 2009 to keep him contracted until 2012.[20]

He scored a penalty to mark his 50th goal for Newcastle on 1 February 2009 against local rivals Sunderland to make the final score 1–1. He scored his first ever career hat-trick in Newcastle's first home match in the Championship against Reading on 15 August. The first two goals were diving headers, and he completed his hat-trick with a penalty, which he placed in the bottom left corner, sending the keeper the wrong way.[21] He scored in the next game in a 1–0 victory over Sheffield Wednesday[22] taking his tally to four goals in three games, equalling his total for the previous season.[citation needed] Following these early season performances he was named the Championship player of the month for August.[23]

Ameobi playing against Chelsea in 2011.

He got injured in Newcastle's 4–3 win over Huddersfield Town in the League Cup.[citation needed] The injury kept him out for three months but on his return he scored against Coventry with a left footed strike from the edge of the box.[24] He followed this up by scoring the second in Newcastle's 2–0 home win over Middlesbrough[25] and their 2–2 away draw with Sheffield Wednesday on Boxing Day[26] taking his tally to an impressive 8 goals from 9 starts.[citation needed] Ameobi was subsequently sidelined with a hamstring injury but made the bench against Nottingham Forest on 29 March 2010. Ameobi appeared early in the second half as a substitute, and soon made his presence felt, firing in an angled left-footed shot off the post to give United the lead in a 2–0 victory.[27] On 3 April 2010, Ameobi scored the decisive goal in a 3–2 victory at Peterborough United.[28]

On 22 September 2010 Ameobi scored two goals in a surprise victory away at Chelsea in the League Cup, including the winner in the 90th minute.[29] On 16 October 2010, Ameobi came off the bench to score Newcastle's first in a 2–2 draw against Wigan Athletic.[30] After his good performance against Wigan, he started the next game against West Ham United alongside Andy Carroll putting in a good performance as The Magpies came from 1–0 down to win 2–1. He scored twice in Newcastle's next league game on 31 October 2010 as Newcastle crushed local rivals Sunderland 5–1 at St. James' Park. On 2 January 2011, he scored the winner in a 1–0 win at Wigan Athletic.[31]

Despite suffering with a cheek bone injury in February which required him to wear a mask which impaired his vision upon his return, he was a regular starter after Christmas with the sale of Andy Carroll. He signed a contract extension to the end of the 2013–14 season on 10 August 2011. His current deal was due to expire at the end of the season.[32]

In the 2011/12 season Ameobi became something of a fringe player, with the arrival of Demba Ba and Papiss Cissé pushing him onto the substitutes bench. But on Sunday 16 October 2011 in a game at St James' Park vs Tottenham Hotspur Ameobi, a 71st minute substitute for Leon Best, scored a great goal late on to lock the two teams at 2–2. The next few games were an annoyance for Ameobi, with Ba finding his shooting boots and pairing well with Leon Best and with Ameobi's inclusion in the starting line-up against Norwich ending up in a 4–2 defeat. On 4 March, Ameobi was yet again on the bench for a game against Sunderland, and brought on as a substitute for Papiss Cissé he scored a 91st minute equaliser to get Newcastle back on terms and bringing his tally to 7 goals in 12 games against Sunderland for Newcastle, a record only bettered by Jackie Milburn. His prolific goal scoring form against Sunderland has led many sections of the Toon Army to refer to him as The Mackem Slayer.[33]

On 21 February 2013, Ameobi scored the only goal of the game from the penalty spot to secure a 1–0 aggregate victory over Metalist Kharkiv in the Europa League Round of 32.[34]

International career[edit]

Nigerian-born Ameobi had a three-year spell with England's under-21 team, netting seven goals between 2000 and 2003.[2] Ameobi is the joint eighth highest goal scorer for the under-21s.[2]

In late 2009, Ameobi declared his interest in playing for Nigeria.[35] On 14 January 2011, he was announced in the Nigerian national squad for the first time, for a friendly against Guatemala in the United States, in February.[36] He withdrew from the replacement game against Sierra Leone after breaking his cheekbone in a Premier League match.

On 1 November 2011, it was announced that FIFA had cleared Ameobi to play for Nigeria.[37]

In October 2012 Nigeria head coach Stephen Keshi expressed his interest in Ameobi joining the squad for the 2013 African Cup of Nations.[38]

In November 2012, Ameobi received his second call up for the Nigeria national team against Venezuela. He made his debut on 14 November, appearing as a substitute in the 60th minute for former teammate Obafemi Martins. In stoppage time at the end of the game, Ameobi laid on a perfect pass for Ogenyi Onazi to make the score 3–1 to Nigeria. He scored his first international goal for Nigeria on 10 September 2013 against Burkina Faso in a friendly in Kaduna, Nigeria.

International goals[edit]

Scores and results list Nigeria's goal tally first.

Career statistics[edit]

As of 19 April 2014[39]
Season Club Division League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total Discipline
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals A yellow card A red card
2000–01 Newcastle United Premier League 20 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 22 2 0 0
2001–02 15 0 1 0 3 2 6 3 25 5 3 0
2002–03 28 5 1 0 0 0 10 3 39 8 4 0
2003–04 26 7 1 0 1 0 13 3 41 10 2 0
2004–05 31 2 5 3 2 1 7 1 45 7 6 1
2005–06 30 9 3 0 0 0 1 0 34 9 5 0
2006–07 12 3 0 0 0 0 4 2 16 5 1 0
2007–08 6 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 8 0 0 0
2007–08 Stoke City (loan) Championship 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 0 2 0
2008–09 Newcastle United Premier League 22 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 22 4 1 0
2009–10 Championship 18 10 2 0 1 1 0 0 21 11 2 0
2010–11 Premier League 28 6 0 0 2 3 0 0 30 9 3 0
2011–12 27 2 2 0 1 0 0 0 30 2 3 0
2012–13 23 1 1 0 1 0 10 3 35 4 7 1
2013–14 23 1 1 0 2 1 0 0 26 2 0 0
Newcastle United total 309 52 19 3 15 8 51 15 394 78 37 2
Career total 315 52 19 3 15 8 51 15 400 78 39 2

Honours[edit]

Newcastle United

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2010). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2010–11. Mainstream Publishing. p. 20. ISBN 978-1-84596-601-0. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "Shola Ameobi Profle". Newcastle United F.C. Retrieved 31 October 2010. 
  3. ^ Newcastle United Player Profile
  4. ^ "Sam Ameobi Profle". Newcastle United F.C. Retrieved 31 October 2010. 
  5. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WONemHpeB2Q
  6. ^ Gadgil, Anjana (11 Dec 2002). "Barcelona 3 – 1 Newcastle". London: guardian.co.uk. Retrieved 18 October 2010. 
  7. ^ "Newcastle stun Bayer". BBC Sport. 19 February 2003. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  8. ^ "L'strom 0–3 Newcastle (agg 1–4)". BBC Sport. 22 July 2006. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  9. ^ "The Toon in Europe 1968–2009 the story so far...". NUFC.com. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  10. ^ "Shola set for hip op". Sky Sports. 25 October 2006. Retrieved 20 October 2008. 
  11. ^ "Ameobi thrilled to return". Sky Sports. 1 May 2007. Retrieved 20 October 2008. 
  12. ^ "Ameobi grabs Keegan lifeline". Sky Sports. 21 January 2008. Retrieved 20 October 2008. 
  13. ^ "Keegan issues Ameobi warning". Sky Sports. 15 February 2008. Retrieved 20 October 2008. 
  14. ^ "Potters pounce for Ameobi". Sky Sports. 27 March 2008. Retrieved 20 October 2008. 
  15. ^ "Potters deny Ameobi deal". Sky Sports. 8 May 2008. Retrieved 20 October 2008. 
  16. ^ "Injury halts Ameobi move". Sky Sports. 19 August 2008. Retrieved 20 October 2008. 
  17. ^ "City deny ten-man Toon". Sky Sports. 20 October 2008. Retrieved 20 October 2008. 
  18. ^ "Kinnear wants Ameobi reaction". Sky Sports. 21 October 2008. Retrieved 21 October 2008. 
  19. ^ Phillips, Owen (25 October 2008). "Sunderland 2–1 Newcastle". BBC Sport. Retrieved 26 October 2008. 
  20. ^ "Ameobi pens new deal at Newcastle". BBC Sport. 7 January 2009. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  21. ^ Henson, Mike (15 August 2009). "Newcastle 3–0 Reading". BBC Sport. Retrieved 16 August 2009. 
  22. ^ "Newcastle 1–0 Sheff Wed". BBC Sport. 19 August 2009. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  23. ^ "Ameobi wins player of month award". BBC Sport. 12 September 2009. Retrieved 12 September 2009. 
  24. ^ "Coventry 0–2 Newcastle". BBC Sport. 8 December 2009. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  25. ^ "Newcastle 2–0 Middlesbrough". BBC Sport. 20 December 2009. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  26. ^ "Sheff Wed 2–2 Newcastle". BBC Sport. 26 December 2009. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  27. ^ "Newcastle 2–0 Nott'm Forest". BBC Sport. 29 March 2010. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  28. ^ "Peterborough 2–3 Newcastle". BBC Sport. 3 April 2010. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  29. ^ "Cheslea 3–4 Newcastle". BBC Sport. 22 September 2010. Retrieved 21 July 2011. 
  30. ^ "Newcastle 2 – 2 Wigan". BBC Sport. 16 October 2010. Retrieved 16 October 2010. 
  31. ^ "Wigan 0 – 1 Newcastle". BBC Sport. 2 January 2011. Retrieved 3 January 2011. 
  32. ^ "Ameobi pens Newcastle deal". London Evening Standard. 10 August 2011. Retrieved 10 August 2011. 
  33. ^ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2549894/Shola-Ameobi-known-Mackem-Slayer-add-goals-Newcastle-against-Sunderland-Tyne-Wear-derby.html.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  34. ^ "Ameobi fires Magpies into last 16". ESPNFC. 21 February 2013. 
  35. ^ Ameobi wants Nigeria call-up KickOff Magazine, 20 November 2009
  36. ^ "Ameobi snubs England for Nigeria". SuperSport. 14 January 2010. Retrieved 14 January 2010. 
  37. ^ "Fifa clears Shola Ameobi, Moses to play for Nigeria". BBC Sport. 1 November 2011. Retrieved 1 November 2011. 
  38. ^ "Nigeria are considering drafting Shola Ameobi into Africa Cup of Nations squad". Sky Sports. 15 October 2012 In November 2013, he scored his second goal against Italy, in a friendly at Craven Cottage. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  39. ^ "Foluwashola Ameobi Career Stats". Soccerbase. Retrieved 29 December 2009. 

External links[edit]