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Newcastle striker Michael Owen has been included in the squad for the Premier League encounter against West Brom on Saturday.

Owen has not played since he fractured a metatarsal against Spurs at White Hart Lane on New Year’s Eve .

Owen is a surprise inclusion as manager Glenn Roeder had suggested the England striker would not be fit until the last day of the season.

“The most we can hope for is for him to return for the last game this season,” Roeder said.

“Even with Alan Shearer out, we won’t rush him.”

News of his inclusion in the squad for tomorrow’s game will come as boost to England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson, who will be looking for Owen to get in as much playing time as possible before the World Cup starts.

Eriksson must name his squad by 15 May, while his team’s World Cup campaign begins against Paraguay on 10 June.

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