As we had suspected Argentine Jonas Gutierrez, a popular man on Tyneside, will play anywhere that Alan Pardew wants to play him.
Jonas Gutierrez – I’ll play anywhere the manager wants me to
Jonas had played in the World Cup in South Africa at right back for Argentina under then manager Diego Maradona, although he had never played there for Newcastle at the time.
Jonas was okay in that position and he found himself at left-back against Norwich last Sunday, and had a good game and came in second in our Man of the Match poll with 17% of the vote, behind winner James Perch, who showed again he’s better than we thought he was.
At the time of the last World Cup, I covered the Argentine games for the now defunct News of the World newspaper, and so knew quite a lot about the Argentine players, including Gutierrez of course.
Jonas was preferred to 21 year-old Davide Santon last Sunday, but we had little thrust down the left wing until the Italian came on in the second half, and gave a solid performance and was congratulated by manager Pardew on his professionalism and mental toughness.
Jonas has had a very good season for Newcastle, but it may be he’s better out on the left wing where he can both make and score goals.
Jonas had this to say today about playing at left back:
“Of course it helps that I do a lot of defensive work when I play on the wing.” “But when you are making a run on the left wing you always have the insurance of a man behind you.”
“When you play left back it’s different. But I try to do my best and to help in any position the manager thinks I can play.” “It’s up to the manager to decide where I should play. I try to do my best and if he wants me to play on the left wing I’ll do that.”
“If I have to play at left back, it’s more important to help the team than to think about yourself.” “This season a lot of players have had to play in different positions because we’ve had a lot of injuries. That’s football, you have to be ready for that.
“It’s good to play different positions. When I played in the middle earlier in the year it was busier because you had a lot of midfield players.” “You are also nearer the strikers, so you can play it more easily to them.”
“I enjoyed playing there as well because it’s good to play in different positions.”
If Jonas wants to lengthen his career then full back is a position he could drop back to, but the lad’s just 28 years-old, and still has some more goals in him – he has 10 goals already for Newcastle in his 144 appearances.
And talking about goals, every time he puts on that Spiderman mask the referees give him a yellow card – because you are not supposed to enjoy scoring goals in football – please control yourself and put a damper on that joy.
But the referees sometimes just go by the rule book with no leniency or judgement at all, because they have never played the game – and as the great Bill Shankly used to say about referees – they know the rules but they don’t know the game.
But Jonas will not be wearing the mask – well that’s until next month when the yellow card count is reset – and yellow cards will not mean too much then:
“I gave the last one to a fan, because I get yellow cards so I think it is no good to spend yellow cards because of a celebration so now I don’t have it.”
“Maybe I’ll use it at the end of the season when the yellow cards don’t count. But we have ten games to go and I don’t want to miss any games.”
It’s a good question as to where Gutierrez will play tomorrow at The Hawthorns, and it could depend on the fitness of Cheick Tiote.
James Perch could even be preferred in that position, as he replaced Santon there in the second half at the Emirates and was solid, and James played one of his best games for the club in the 1-0 win against Norwich in defensive midfield.
A win in the game tomorrow against West Brom would be terrific, and could have Newcastle right back in the hunt for 5th place, with Chelsea playing Tottenham at Stamford Bridge today, in the early kick-off game at 12:45 pm.
A Newcastle win and a Chelsea defeat will see Newcastle in 5th place and one point ahead of Chelsea.
Now how much money have Chelsea spent on their players since Abramovich came in back in 2003?
Howay The Lads!!