Football - Fab boost for Newcastle

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is confident skipper Fabricio Coloccini is in the right frame of mind to lead the club out of the relegation mire.

PA Sport

The 31-year-old Argentinian has handed the Magpies a massive boost by withdrawing his request to leave the club this month as he attempts to deal with problems in his private life.

Coloccini was desperate to return to South America, but his representatives failed to win his release from the four-year contract extension he signed last season at a meeting earlier this week, and delicate negotiations since have reached a resolution which will see one of Pardew's most influential performers stay to head the fight for Barclays Premier League survival.

The central defender has clearly been affected by his off-field crisis in recent weeks, but his manager is confident he is ready psychologically to handle what lies ahead.

Pardew said: "Coloccini is going to stay with us and will remain as captain, which is fantastic news for us.

"We have managed to persuade him that, as much as his family, we need him. He has shown fantastic loyalty to come and play and see us through until the summer at the very least.

"The psychology of these particular problems he has had has been difficult for him. He has played under duress emotionally, rather than physically, and that's just as demanding as having an injured leg, for example.

"But I am clear in my mind that we have cleared up a few things and that he knows where he stands here.

"He needs to understand he has a responsibility to our fans and players and staff here because there will be jobs lost if we don't make it.

"He is going to be a massive influence on whether we get out of the situation we are in."

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