Football - Avoiding drop is key for Coloccini

Newcastle skipper Fabricio Coloccini is desperate to avoid experiencing the bitter taste of relegation for a second time.

PA Sport

The 31-year-old Argentina international returned from a two-month injury lay-off to play his part in last weekend's 0-0 Barclays Premier League draw at West Ham.

That may have been a positive result, but victories for Aston Villa and Wigan and a point for Sunderland left the Magpies sitting just three points clear of the relegation zone with two games remaining and in danger of dropping into the bottom three had the Latics beaten Swansea at the DW Stadium on Tuesday evening.

In the event, Roberto Martinez's men twice surrendered the lead before eventually losing 3-2 and that means victory for Newcastle at relegated QPR on Sunday would drag them to the brink of safety, staving off a repeat of the nightmare scenario Coloccini experienced in 2009.

He told the club's official website: "It's a bit different because last time, every game we thought 'the next game we will win' and 'the next game we will win', and that never happened.

"But now we are focussed. The team knows what we are fighting and that's very important. We are fighting all together.

"When we are where we are now, you can criticise whatever you want, but when we go onto the pitch or come to the training ground, we try to do our best.

"We are together, we know what we are fighting and we have big players who have played in the Champions League and won leagues, so nobody wants to go down here."

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