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Opinion

Sammy Ameobi set to make remarkable return to the Premier League?

5 months ago
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Sammy Ameobi could be playing Premier League football next season.

Yes, whisper it quietly, but the former Newcastle United winger / attacking midfielder could be a 2020/21 top tier performer.

If so, it would complete a remarkable turn around.

More famous for being Shola’s young brother when at St James Park, Sammy Ameobi finally departed permanently from NUFC at the end of June 2017.

The stand out thing for me, was that despite being 25 years old, everybody was still calling him ‘young Sammy”, even as he walked out of the exit door.

In total, Sammy Ameobi made only 21 Premier League starts (33 PL appearances off the bench) for Newcastle, never really convincing anybody that he was going to make it in the Premier League.

Two Premier League goals, scoring a bizarre equaliser against Spurs only seconds into the second half after coming on as a sub. The other one came in John Carver’s first ever win (one of only three in 20 games) as NUFC Head Coach, a 3-0 win away at Steve Bruce’s Hull City.

Loan spells in the Championship and League One at Middlesbrough, Cardiff and Bolton didn’t give any great hope of anything but lower league football for Sammy Ameobi in the future.

Released by Newcastle in summer 2017, the winger joined Bolton on a two year deal.

They scraped survival when fourth bottom in 2017/18 and then were relegated second bottom in 2018/19, Sammy Ameobi doing ok at a car crash club, but certainly not suggesting great things ahead.

Signing a one year deal with Nottingham Forest looks to have been the making of him.

Playing with a better level of players, Sammy Ameobi has played in every single game he has been available, starting in 32 Championship matches of the 39 so far, off the bench in another six.

With seven games left, Forest are in fifth, seven points off the automatic promotion spots and seven clear of those chasing the play-offs.

Involved directly in 11 Championship goals, Sammy Ameobi has scored three and has eight assists this season so far.

Last month, a one year contract extension was triggered for the 2020/21 season.

Forest fans were initially sceptical but Sammy Ameobi has won them over with his displays and many of them see Shola’s younger brother as somebody to get them off their seats.

Forest look to have just as much chance as anybody of getting promotion via the play-offs and still have an outside shot at the automatic places.

To see Sammy Ameobi back at St James Park for Forest next season in the Premier League would be quite surreal.

Considering how much talk is given over online to how past Newcastle players are getting on, very surprising that Sammy appears to have gone under the radar despite stepping up his level of performance this season.

It will be definitely fact stranger than fiction if  ‘young Sammy’ is back in the top tier.

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