Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughMichael Owen's most memorable moments (video) - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough Michael Owen's most memorable moments (video) - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

Michael Owen’s most memorable moments (video)

Like a ticking time-bomb, Michael Owen’s retirement was always in the post. However, in spite of its inevitability, the majority of English football supporters will have been gripped by an air of nostalgia and sadness by today’s news that one of England’s greatest ever strikers is to finally hang up his boots.

Throughout his career, Michael Owen has scored an impressive 163 goals in 360 club appearances, achieved 89 England caps and netted on 40 occasions, won the Premier League, FA Cup, 3 League Cups and one UEFA Cup and was named as the European Footballer of the Year in 2001.

Besides his accolades, Owen provided a generation of football fans with many iconic images as English football progressed from the nineties into the new millenium.

1) Michael Owen burst onto the scene in World Cup 1998 at the age of just 18, after an impressive debut season for Liverpool in which he earned his first England call up in a friendly against Chile just 4 months before the beginning of France 98. He oozed confidence beyond his years in the number 20 shirt and provided England fans with great hope of reaching the quarter finals after a memorable run and finish against Argentina.

2) When all seemed lost for Liverpool at the Millenium Stadium, Michael Owen struck twice in the last 10 minutes of the final to win the Reds the FA Cup against a shell-shocked Arsenal side, one of 5 trophies that Liverpool lifted in 2001.

3) In one of English football’s finest moments in recent living memory, Michael Owen scored a hat-trick to inflict a crushing 5-1 defeat on Germany in the Olympic Stadium in Munich. The defeat was so compelling, that the German FA opted to re-haul their entire national youth set-up after the result.

4) Another moment of hope was given to England fans in World Cup 2002 as Michael Owen raced through to pounce on a Brazilian defensive error and give his country a quarter-final lead. Unfortunately, a Rivaldo equaliser and Ronaldinho’s infamous lob over David Seaman cost England a place in the World Cup semis.

5) Owen’s finest moment in a Manchester United jersey came in the Manchester derby when the striker – often renowned as a fox in the box – pounced in the 96th minute to secure an incredible last-gasp victory over ‘noisy neighbours’ Manchester City.

It is easy to forget the contribution that Michael Owen has given to English football given his recent injuries and the stop-start nature of his career since World Cup 2006, however these moments alone help refresh the memory of English football supporters and should rightfully earn Owen the accolade as one of English football’s most prodigious ever talents.