Jonas Gutierrez has achieved the seemingly impossible when after having to go through chemotherapy treatment and beaten testicular cancer he has returned to the Newcastle first team, and he got a hero’s welcome at St. James’ Park on Wednesday night in the 1-0 loss to Manchester United.
Jonas in action on Wednesday night
You could have wished to return against a more famous side like the Red Devils and that’s exactly what Jonas did and it made him a real hero back in his home town of Buenos Aries.
This is what Gutierrez has told the Shields Gazette today:
“For me, since I knew I had to go through chemotherapy, I was just thinking day by day,” “What I wanted was to be healthy and finish the treatment – that was what I was thinking.”
“I finished the treatment, and I wanted to see if I could play again.” “You never know how the body is going to react.” “In the first months it was hard.”
“The body has to get used to training again every day. I was improving a bit every day.” “Now I feel strong and healthy and I am so pleased to play.”
“I want to wait to get more opportunities on the pitch.” “It was a special moment to be back,” “That was something that I have been fighting for since I was told I was in recovery.”
“I wanted to be back. It was really good. I enjoyed the atmosphere – it was emotional. I’m never going to forget this day.”
“The first few minutes, you can’t breathe properly. The game is a different speed.” “The first few minutes are the hardest, then you are used to the game.”
“It’s normal to find it hard in the first few minutes. I made a good tackle, and then I started to enjoy it.” “I tried to start dribbling again with the ball and the things that I like to do.”
“I feel better, and I try to improve all the time.”
With Papiss Cisse likely to miss the next seven games through injury we need Jonas’ experience on either wing to set up chances for the strikers we have left to play – Ayoze Perez, Manu Riviere and young Adam Armstrong.
Great action shot of number 18 Gutierrez
And it puts Ayoze right back in the spotlight, and though it’s asking a lot of the young Spaniard he could top off a great first season for Newcastle by adding to the five Premier League goals he already has for Newcastle this season.
In any case it’s a great human story that Jonas has given us this season, and he reminds us of the things that are important in life, and that as you get close to death – it seems to give you more life.
It would be great to have Jonas playing well and regularly for Newcastle for the rest of the season.
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