Newcastle United old pals act can work wonders for Notts County's survival bid - Shola Ameobi

Shola Ameobi.
Shola Ameobi.

Former Newcastle United striker Shola Ameobi believes old friendships forged at St James' Park can serve him well in the next chapter of his footballing career.

At the weekend the 35-year-old ex-Nigerian international forward penned a deal until the end of the season with League Two strugglers Notts County, who are managed by Kevin Nolan, and also have Alan Smith on their books.

Ameobi, who spent 14 years on Tyneside, made his Notts debut in the 2-0 loss against Accrington on Saturday.

And he believes that having enjoyed promotion to the Premier League with Smith and Nolan at United back in 2009/10, Ameobi, with the help of his old pals, can turn things around at the relegation-threatened outfit, also nicknamed the Magpies.

"I know the manager and Alan Smith very well from our days at Newcastle," admitted Ameobi.

"So it has been great to join up with them again.

Kevin Nolan during his time at NUFC, battling with SAFC midfielder Dean Whitehead.

Kevin Nolan during his time at NUFC, battling with SAFC midfielder Dean Whitehead.

"I feel I can use my experience to help the club on and off the pitch and the manager will value that."

That Stanley outing was the first Ameobi had made since April 2016, while on the books of Fleetwood Town.

He has not started a game since March last year.

For a man who has played Champions League football with Newcastle and scored a goal in the Nou Camp, the Crown Ground, now interestingly known as the Wham Stadium, cut as humble surroundings at the weekend.

Shola Ameobi battles with Fabio Borini.

Shola Ameobi battles with Fabio Borini.

But that matters little to Ameobi. He is just delighted to be back playing, and honoured to be doing it at such a historic club.

"It's all about playing - that's all that matters," he added.

"Regardless of who you play, you still get the same buzz and the adrenaline still pumps.

"I'm really excited to get back playing again.

"It's a huge honour for me to join a club like this, one of the founder members of the Football League."

Manager Nolan is delighted to have the considerable experience of Ameobi on board.

And he revealed the frontman was training with the NUFC Under-23 side in order to remain fit, with a view to a return to football.

Nolan said: "Shola is a great lad and he has kept himself in great shape by training with Newcastle's Under 23 side for the last six months.

"I'm delighted we have been able to get the deal done."