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Newcastle striker Martins opts for Toon stay

Obafemi Martins had been expected to be amongst those leaving relegated Newcastle in the summer, but the Nigeria international is willing to stop and lead the club's promotion push next season. "I hope I am not sold," he told the Evening Chronicle.

"If the club decides to sell me I have no choice but to go. But my aim is to stay and help get Newcastle promoted next season.

"I love living in Newcastle and there are few better places to live and play.

"I know the club is for sale and that is hard for the fans. Yet I hear there could be some light at the end of the tunnel eventually."

Martins has recently been in Italy were he noted how Juventus coped with relegation.

He added: "I have been in Italy for treatment lately.

"There I spoke to a lot of people about Juventus and their demotion to Serie B (in 2006).

"Back then, they still kept very, very good players such as Pavel Nedved, Alessandro Del Piero and Gianluigi Buffon. That helped them get promoted, so I can take a lot of solace from that."

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