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Jonas Gutierrez puts Newcastle needs ahead of international ambitions
Published : 19 Oct 2009 13:41:48
The Argentine international has played a key role in helping Diego Maradona secure his country a place at next year's World Cup finals but he has now pledged to concentrate on Newcastle United's Championship campaign. Gutierrez, 26, was hailed by Maradona in the 1-0 victory against Uruguay in Montevideo that guarantee Argentina's berth in South Africa last Wednesday but he was brought down to earth with a bump last weekend in a 1-0 defeat by Nottingham Forest. Gutierrez was only able to play a bit role at the City Ground but now he fully intends to put the club's promotion campaign back on track at Scunthorpe's Glanford Park ground on Tuesday night. "It was fantastic on Wednesday and it was dream to get to the World Cup but Argentina is finished now and I must focus on Newcastle,' said Gutierrez who has been assured a place in South Africa by Maradona. "I want to get us back up and that is all I am thinking about. It was very nice for Diego Maradona to say that I am going to the World Cup. But I can't stop, I have to keep on playing my best for Newcastle and I must keep up my form." Newcastle surrendered pole position in the promotion race to West Bromwich Albion last weekend and will meet a Scunthorpe side buoyed by a 3-1 victory over Sheffield United. Gutierrez has insisted that nothing less than a three-point haul will be acceptable for Newcastle who have taken just two points from their last three games. "I was very happy after getting to the World Cup and I wanted to celebrate with another win on Saturday,' Gutierrez added. "It was a very hard game, though, and we didn't play as well as we have been. I thought we did better after half-time and we should have got a draw at least. "But it is good that we have another match on Tuesday. We have to take the three points and get back to the top of the table." Midfielder Kevin Nolan has echoed Gutierrez's sentiments and said things could get "ugly" in the visitors' dressing room at Scunthorpe. "It's difficult to explain why things were so poor at Forest but when it comes to naming names I think we could point the finger at every single player in our dressing room," Nolan said. "The fact is we're not going to come to grounds and get it easy. We've got to get used to that. I'm not happy at all. I don't think anyone is. "We've got a game on Tuesday at Scunthorpe and it will be the same again. We've got to put it right there. We expect a reaction, that's for sure. "If we don't get the right reaction, it's going to be ugly. It's not going to be a nice dressing room to come back into because we set high standards for ourselves."