Martins seeks Toon talks

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Obafemi Martins is braced for showdown talks with Newcastle boss Sam Allardyce, with the powerful Nigerian seeking assurances on his future following the arrival of Mark Viduka.

Newcastle had a dearth of attacking options last season following serious injuries to Michael Owen and Shola Ameobi but the pair are now fit, and when coupled with the signing of Viduka, Martins could find himself scrapping for a starting spot.

Martins showed in his debut campaign in England last term that he has all the attributes to be one of the division's finest, with the pacey front-man having exploded into life in the second half of the year, after what was a slow start.

Such good form prompted talk of a £13million swith to Arsenal, when it became public knowledge that he had insisted on a release clause, upon his arrival from Internazionale.

Allardyce must now reassure Martins of the role he is to play at St James' Park next season, after the player told the Daily Mirror: "I have a meeting with the manager when I get back to training.

"We will see what happens then."

While Martins' future remains subject to conjecture, one man delighted to be wearing black and white is Viduka, and the big Australian cannot wait to work in tandem with Owen, who has this week pledged to stay at Newcastle

"I believe that these can be good times to be at Newcastle which is why I am more than happy to be here," he told The Daily Telegraph.

"The fact he (Owen) is going to stay here at Newcastle has got to be brilliant for the fans and the team.

"He's obviously a very different player to me, but I would like to think that if selected we would be able to complement each other very nicely and create a successful partnership."