Craig Bellamy admits he is desperate to find the back of the net to help Newcastle end their demoralising start to the season. The 24-year-old Wales striker goes into tonight's match with the Dutch side NAC Breda having scored just once in his last 20 games for the club, and that was back in March.
Alan Shearer, who has signed a one-year contract extension with Newcastle that will take him to the summer of 2005 when he is planning to retire, has scored all five of his side's Premiership goals this season. Nolberto Solano, who clinched a 1-0 Champions' League qualifier victory against Partizan Belgrade on 13 August, is the only other player to score and that is a situation Bellamy wants to change.
"I desperately need a goal. There's no doubt about that," he said. "But at this stage, I've got to be perfectly honest, the first win is more important than my first goal.
"It's been a poor start for us. It was the same last year. We had a poor start but we got our season back on track and we ended up finishing third."
The Newcastle manager, Sir Bobby Robson, is set to rest Jonathan Woodgate, who has been out of action recently with a torn stomach muscle, but Andy O'Brien should return from a hamstring strain. Robson insists his selection will not be affected by Friday night's league trip to Arsenal.Reuse content