• Premier League

Houllier: Owen would make good manager

ESPN staff
March 19, 2013
Gerard Houllier believes Michael Owen has the ability to become a manager

Former Liverpool manager Gerard Houllier has led the tributes to Michael Owen after the striker announced he would retire from the game at the end of the season, believing he could go into management.

Asked to sum up Owen's contribution to the game, Houllier said: "Fantastic. Practically one goal every two games for the national team, same for Liverpool. A tremendous record, a lot of trophies. As a manager I was blessed to have met him and to have him in my team because it's the players like Jamie Carragher, Steven Gerrard Gary McAllister you never forget about and also they make you win.

"Michael was very much involved in all the trophies we won in one season [2001] and even in that year he won the best award that any footballer can dream of which is the Ballon d'Or [2001]. I think he was a fantastic player. He was clever, a very intelligent person. I remember the person as well as the player. He was extremely fast and quick with good speed and could withstand the challenges.

"People would think he had a lot of injuries maybe because he was overplayed when he was too young, I don't know, all I can say is that he's a match winner. Many games sometimes we were one-nil down and he would have this spark to overturn the game.

Asked if he agreed that Owen had played too many games at the start of his career, Houllier said: "I don't know. He admitted that one day, I know sometimes I'd rest him and he wouldn't like that because he had this fire in his belly, he was a great competitor. He was spectacular to watch. He could beat players, he could go fast and he had a fantastic skill in front of goal. In that category of skill I have met only probably Robbie Fowler. Both were outstanding in front of goal."

And the Frenchman believes Owen could go into management. "Well he's bright, clever enough to do that," said Houllier. "He's always been a very team thinking type of player like Steven Gerrard, Jamie Carragher, they are very much team orientated."

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