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Hughton On Colo & Jonas


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Chris Hughton: I never doubted my Argentinian players

Feb 12 2010  by Stuart Rayner, The Journa

 

 

CHRIS Hughton says he never doubted Argentinian pair Fabricio Coloccini and Jonás Gutiérrez’s commitment to Newcastle United after relegation.

 

As two of the highest-profile and highest-paid signings of Kevin Keegan’s second spell as Magpies manager, and with a World Cup to aim for, it was widely assumed Coloccini and Gutiérrez would return to the Continent as soon as demotion was confirmed last summer.

 

But once Hughton got the go-ahead from owner Mike Ashley to keep those players who wanted to stay, he was confident neither would jump ship. Coloccini in particular has thrived since.

 

“When we didn’t know who would be coming and who would be staying he was one that because he was an international we weren’t sure if he would be here or not, but he was one we definitely wanted to keep,” said Hughton of the centre-back.

 

“The only reason I hadn’t assumed he would want to go was because he’d shown no signs of it. Probably him and Gutiérrez are seen as a pair and if one went, maybe both would. But they both showed a great desire to be here.”

 

Coloccini’s value has been highlighted by his injuries, which have coincided with some of Newcastle’s worst performances. A case in point was Tuesday’s 3-0 defeat at Derby County, which the 28-year-old missed with a slight hamstring problem, along with Steven Taylor and José Enrique.

 

“Mike Williamson’s done very well, as has Fitz Hall in the two games he’s played,” Hughton argued. “But if I look at what has been our regular back four there’s been three players missing. At any

 

club at any time you wouldn’t want to be missing what you regard as your most consistent players.” That Coloccini – expected back at Swansea tomorrow – is now one of those is testament to his character.

 

“When a team’s not doing so well like last year as a central defender it’s even more difficult because you’re going to be under a lot of pressure,” said Hughton.

“The first year was always going to be a difficult season but I think he’s been excellent this season.

 

“I don’t think it’s just because it’s this division, I think it’s the settling-in period.

 

“It’s his second season and he’s got used to the pace of the game and the things outside of football, the language and so on.”

 

Hughton has experience of working with Argentinian footballers, having been a Tottenham Hotspur team-mate of the first two to ply their trade in this country.

 

Like Ossie Ardiles and Ricky Villa, Hughton believes they have benefited from the presence of each other, and fellow Spanish speakers.

 

“It’s a very multicultural squad,” he added. “We had Enrique and Xisco last year. Probably that’s been the biggest plus for them settling in.

 

“They enjoy being at this club and appreciate what a big club it is. It’s maybe also the closeness of the city.

 

“It’s one thing I learnt when I came here – that it’s a smaller city than I thought it was. With that comes the support and the passion for the team.

 

“Their families are very settled. With any foreign player, that’s halfway to being settled.”

 

As Coloccini sweats on his World Cup place – Gutiérrez’s (pictured below) seems assured – Hughton has assured him that he remains well thought of by his countrymen.

 

“I still speak to Ossie Ardiles on a regular basis,” he revealed. “He always asks about them, how they’re doing.

 

“The big difference when Ossie and Ricky came in 1978 when it was a lot bigger deal.

 

“It was a very brave move particularly as they hadn’t come via Spain, they’d come from Argentina.

 

“Apart from getting promoted, their biggest goal is a World Cup at the end of the season. I think it’s possible. It’s not for me to pick anybody’s side but although we’re in a different division I would think (Coloccini) is playing as well as any other Argentinian centre-half.

 

“But I’ve had no contact with Diego Maradona at all.”

http://www.journallive.co.uk/nufc/newcastle-united-news/2010/02/12/chris-hughton-i-never-doubted-my-argentinian-players-61634-25818404/

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Guest John McClane

i wouldint worry about it if i were them im sure they will be the 1st names on the argentina team sheet  :kasper: Maradonna was a Great player but a bloddy awfull gaffer

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Jonas is in the squad for their game vs Germany on 20th of March, means he'll miss our game at Bristol C, right?

 

It looks likely. Just checked that our game that day will be on TV. Don't know which one to watch, Jonas beating Germany or us beating Bristol...  :frantic:

 

Seriously, we shouldn't let Jonas go for a unimportant friendly game as he's our only decent left winger. I'm not prepared to see Guthrie there again.

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Jonas is in the squad for their game vs Germany on 20th of March, means he'll miss our game at Bristol C, right?

 

It looks likely. Just checked that our game that day will be on TV. Don't know which one to watch, Jonas beating Germany or us beating Bristol...   :frantic:

 

Seriously, we shouldn't let Jonas go for a unimportant friendly game as he's our only decent left winger. I'm not prepared to see Guthrie there again.

 

Chances are he'll be desperate to play in that though. I know Maradona has guarenteed him a place pretty much, he'll probably want to make sure he plays in all the friendlies to confirm his place.

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Jonas is in the squad for their game vs Germany on 20th of March, means he'll miss our game at Bristol C, right?

 

It looks likely. Just checked that our game that day will be on TV. Don't know which one to watch, Jonas beating Germany or us beating Bristol...   :frantic:

 

Seriously, we shouldn't let Jonas go for a unimportant friendly game as he's our only decent left winger. I'm not prepared to see Guthrie there again.

 

Chances are he'll be desperate to play in that though. I know Maradona has guarenteed him a place pretty much, he'll probably want to make sure he plays in all the friendlies to confirm his place.

 

Well, come that day we might even be 10 points ahead of WBA and Forrest so it won't matter anyway.

 

Or we will be 5 or so behind...

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Jonas is in the squad for their game vs Germany on 20th of March, means he'll miss our game at Bristol C, right?

 

It looks likely. Just checked that our game that day will be on TV. Don't know which one to watch, Jonas beating Germany or us beating Bristol...   :frantic:

 

Seriously, we shouldn't let Jonas go for a unimportant friendly game as he's our only decent left winger. I'm not prepared to see Guthrie there again.

 

Chances are he'll be desperate to play in that though. I know Maradona has guarenteed him a place pretty much, he'll probably want to make sure he plays in all the friendlies to confirm his place.

 

Aye, would potentially be killing off all his morale asking him not to play for his country this close to a WC.

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