ALAN Pardew wants to see Shola Ameobi back at Newcastle United in the future – as a coach!
The long-serving striker will leave the club this summer when his contract expires at the end of next month.
Ameobi, who is hoping to go to next month’s World Cup with Nigeria, said it felt like the “right time” to leave Newcastle after a 14-year first-team career.
The 32-year-old Geordie – who scored 79 goals for United – could be handed a Premier League lifeline by Hull City, with Steve Bruce looking to add European experience to his squad.
For his part, Ameobi is keen to play regular first-team football in the last few years of his career.
But Newcastle manager Pardew, who believes Ameobi will have a lot to offer off the field when he hangs up his boots, hopes the striker will return to St James’s Park in the future.
“Shola will go down as having been a very important person for this football club,” Pardew told SportMail.
“I hope, one day, that they bring him back.
“His professionalism and the way he articulates himself, is something he should be very proud of.”
Pardew has previously talked of Ameobi – who was sent off on his last United appearance against Liverpool on the final day of last season – having a future in management.
His name wasn’t on the retained list issued by United last week, though his younger brother Sammy remains on the club’s books.
Shola Ameobi – who made his senior international debut for the country of his birth in late 2012 – has been named in Nigeria’s preliminary World Cup squad.
Super Eagles coach Stephen Keshi has until Monday to name his final 23-man selection for Brazil.