One of the things that settled our Argentine Internationals down over the summer, was when manager Diego Maradona told them they didn’t have to leave Newcastle to keep their places in the Argentine squad.
Jonas Gutierrez – vital game tonight for Argentina
Maradona has had a difficult start to his coaching career, but Newcastle manager Hughton believes Maradona had done the Tyneside club a huge favour by reassuring Coloccini and Gutiérrez they would continue in the Argentine side, even though Newcastle were playing in England’s second division.
And to be fair to the players they have both played well for their club side this season, albeit in a lower class of football than the Premier League.
Hughton said today:
“It would have been pleasing for them to hear what Maradona said and good for us as well. He has stood by that and Jonas started at right-back against Peru at the weekend, so that shows how much he is valued.”
“He is a player he wants in the team. The fact we are now in a different division and Jonás is still playing for one of the top nations in the world says that playing in the Championship has not changed the mentality of the national team coach. It has been an important decision for us.”
“It would be massive for them to get to the World Cup. With all players who have the massive target of playing in a World Cup, it has a major influence on their performances towards the end of the
“There will be a few nervy moments I’m sure, but to cement a place would help them in terms of playing for us as well.” “It would be good news and we hope they manage to do that.”
“It would be Colo and Jonás’ first involvement in a World Cup and it would be a wonderful thing for them, so if they get the result they need (against Uruguay) Jonas would come back very happy and that normally benefits your club form.”
“Jonás comes back late on Friday afternoon, that is always a problem (in terms of playing against Nottingham Forest) because it is a long flight.” “That is what happens when you have South Americans and they are aware of it. We just have to hope he will come through OK.”
Coloccini played for Argentina in the 2006 World Cup in Germany, and looked a good player then, but it is the first World Cup for Jonas.
Gutierrez has been injured this season but both players seem determined to help Newcastle back to the Premier League, and what would be better for our two Argentine players if in the summer, Newcastle are back in the Premier League, and Argentina are in the World Cup finals in South Africa, with both players in the squad.
That would be great and we’re sure that’s what they are hoping.
If they can at least draw with Uruguay in Montevideo tonight then Argentina will have qualified and a massive weight will have been lifted from the shoulders of former Argentina great, Maradona – but it will not be easy.
We expect Jonas to again start this game, as he seems to be a favorite of Diego, but of course Coloccini couldn’t travel because of his groin injury, and he’s still doubtful for Saturday’s game..
“They are both very good characters, as individuals they have come here and are delighted to be here. It is the excitement of something different, playing here for the first time.”
“They have been very good around the place and have shown a great desire to be around the place. They look on being here as a great experience for them and they want to help this club to do well.”
“The only way that can happen is by playing well and that is how they view it. What we have now is a group of players who want to fight for the cause, and the two Argentinians wanted to stay and want to take the club back to where it belongs.”
We have to hope that Argentina can get the point they need tonight to qualify, and let’s hope Gutierrez has another good game to help them through.
But of course the main thing for Newcastle fans is that Jonas returns to Tyneside fit and well, although because of his travel schedule it may be that he starts Saturday’s game at Nottingham Forest on the bench.