SHOLA Ameobi returns for Newcastle United against Reading – adamant the club can turn its season around.
Ameobi sat out last weekend’s goalless draw against Norwich City through suspension.
The result left Newcastle just two points off the Premier League’s relegation zone, and United desperately need a win against Reading at St James’s Park on Saturday.
Ameobi – who opted not to play for Nigeria in this month’s African Cup of Nations – remains upbeat ahead of a tough second half of the campaign.
“Listen, we’re only halfway through the season,” Ameobi said.
“For us, we’ve got a lot to play for. Sometimes you just need a result to galvanise you.
“We’ve played well at times this season, and not got results. And if we stick together, we know we can turn this season around.”
Newcastle also have the small matter of a Europa League Round of 32 tie against Metalist Kharkiv next month.
Long-serving Ameobi, 31, is the club’s second-highest European goalscorer behind Alan Shearer.
While staying in the Premier League is the club’s over-riding objective, the former England Under-21 international is looking forward to the challenge of playing the Ukrainian side.
“We’re delighted that we’re in the draw first and foremost,” said Ameobi.
“Whatever team that came out the hat, we knew we’d have to play well. We’re getting down to the business end of the Europa League.
“I really enjoy playing in European competition. Hopefully, we can get a good result at home and take it to their place.”
Ameobi was suspended for one game after his dismissal for two bookable offences in United’s FA Cup defeat to Brighton and Hove Albion.
He opened his seasonal account with the only goal in last month’s home game against Queens Park Rangers.