Xisco earns shock recall
Forgotten man Xisco has come in from the cold after being recalled to the Newcastle squad for Thursday night's Europa League clash with Club Brugge.
The 26-year-old Spanish striker's arrival on Tyneside in a £5.7million switch from Deportivo la Coruna in September 2008, along with that of loan signing Nacho Gonzalez, proved the final straw for then manager Kevin Keegan, who walked out days later having had little to do with the signings.
But Xisco, who has spent much of his time at the club out on loan to Deportivo and Racing Santander and is in the final 12 months of his five-year deal, flew out to Belgium with the rest of the squad on Wednesday having scored a hat-trick for the Magpies' Under-21s team last month to catch the eye of manager Alan Pardew.
Pardew said: "I don't know how much pain he has gone though, if I am honest, I have not really sat down and spoken to him about that.
"My purpose at this football club is to try to get the best out of every individual, and I am trying to do that with him.
"I am not sure if he will be included tomorrow, if I am honest, but I wanted to bring him into the group just so he felt part of it.
"He causes us no problems, he gets on with his work and we are trying to help him.
"The future for Xisco, hopefully, is a return to playing. Like all players, he wants to play and he has not really done anything wrong other than not reach the level of the first team since he has been here.
"We have tried to give him some direction and some hope that he can forward his career.
"He is a well-liked player in the group."
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