Newcastle United midfielder Jonas Gutierrez has revealed to the Chronicle one of the low points while he was recovering during his battle against testicular cancer.
The Argentine has confirmed that former Magpies boss Alan Pardew told him to find a new club, just after he’d had a second operation after he was diagnosed with the horrible disease.
Fortunately for him and for the club, he stayed on and recently fought his way back into the first team, making his return to competitive action for the club against Manchester United in a game the side lost 1-0.
“He told me to look for a team a moment after the second operation at the end of 2013. This hurt me a lot,” said Gutierrez.
“You have to be more human and not look only at the football side and business - I’m going to fight for my place.”
Newcastle, Pardew and Gutierrez have all subsequently moved on from that point in 2013 with the player an important individual over the rest of the season for his club.
Newcastle still have a good chance of making the top eight in the Premier League and Gutierrez will be important for a number of reasons.
One of the most obvious is the fact that he’s a very experienced player, who will be important keeping the younger players in the side calm as things get tenser.
He’s also an inspirational figure because of what he’s been through. If players see him giving that little bit extra for the cause, they can raise their performance levels in the middle of an important game and that could make all the difference.