It seems to be taking forever for the new season to get started and we're still none the wiser about who might be joining the squad.
Will it be Owen? That's starting to seem increasingly unlikely now, though I thought it was a done deal on Monday. How about Ballack? These rumours keep bubbling to the surface which seems to indicate that there are some level of negotiations going on between Manchester United and Bayern Munich but I guess it is in both teams' interest to keep it quiet.
I'd prefer Ballack of the two, the need for some commanding midfield presence seems the most urgent, assuming that Ruud van Nistelrooy is going to get back to something like his best that is. If Ruud's dry spell goes on, and he still seemed out of sorts on the Asian tour to me, then Owen would be good to have around but if Ruud is back, it would be one striker too many. I'd hate to see Owen playing against us though. Even if it was in a Newcastle shirt!
At this stage it's hard to believe that we are properly prepared for a serious title challenge this season, what with the rows, the tantrums, the injuries and the unsettled squad, to say nothing of the continuing doubts about the Glazers. Let's hope that Sir Alex will prove me wrong - it wouldn't be the first time...