Alan Pardew had commented yesterday that the news that Joey Barton and Jose Enrique were not fully committed to Newcastle was just absolute rubbish.
Jose Enrique – desperate to play today
We hadn’t seen those reports on the internet, but there’s little doubt that these two players are consummate professionals, and of course Joey will be a key man for Newcastle this afternoon against Wolves.
This is how Alan Pardew reacted yesterday to those reports about the players not being fully committed:
“I have no doubts about their attitudes. I do not think there is any question about their commitment to the cause.”
And as we had expected, Jose is desperate to play this afternoon, and just to show how committed he is right now to Newcastle, Jose has brought over his own personal trainer from Portugal, to help him with his fitness.
The trainer seems to have worked well with the Newcatsle medical staff over the last week or so, and Jose is very keen to pass his fitness test today.
Alan talked about Jose Enrique today:
“José has come to see me and is desperate to play against Wolves, but is also desperate to ensure the setback at Stoke does not happen again. That change at Stoke when he had to go off possibly cost us the first goal.”
“It is a very tough call and I have to make sure I call it right because there are still seven games after this one. He is either fit to play and he plays, or I leave him out.”
“He has been receiving treatment here although he has a very trusted trainer with him who he has used a lot in the past.” “He has joined our medical team to make sure we have touched all the bases.”
“The medical work he has done is very good and he has had some great advice. I cannot stress enough how committed he is. Joey will definitely play against Wolves and José is 50-50 but desperate to play.
It would appear that Jose could even make the game this afternoon, but Alan Pardew has to make sure he can play the full game, and will not come off again after 20 minutes or so, as happened at Stoke.
And a rest today would make Jose a cast iron certainty for the important game next Saturday at Villa Park, and have him available for the rest of the season too.
If there’s any doubt at all this morning, when Jose gets his fitness test, then Newcastle should give Enrique a rest today, and play young Shane Ferguson from the start.
Shane will not let Newcastle down, that’s for sure.