Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Coloccini out to Make History in Derby Clash; Coloccini out to Make Derby History

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Coloccini out to Make History in Derby Clash; Coloccini out to Make Derby History

Article excerpt

Byline: Stuart Rayner

FABRICIO Coloccini has urged his Newcastle United teammates to "write history" on Sunday, but stressed that the last chapter of the Tyne-Wear story will have no bearing.

Although the Argentina centre-back would swap defeat in Sunderland for a run of wins elsewhere, the game's significance is not lost on a defender who moved to Tyneside in 2008.

Both sides will be without key players, with Magpies midfielder Cheik Tiot failing to overturn the red card picked up at Stevenage. The Black Cats should take extra motivation from Newcastle's 5-1 victory in October, but Coloccini downplayed the suggestion.

"I don't know," he said. "Every derby has a different history. Now we have to write another piece of history for Newcastle United."

This will be Coloccini's fourth appearance in matches between the North East's leading clubs. His record reads won one, lost one, drawn one.

"I enjoy playing in derbies," he said. "It's one of the most important games in the season. We seem to play well in the big games this season.

"I enjoy the competitiveness, and in the week leading up to the game the people talk to you about how important it is. But I'd prefer it if it would help you to lose that and win seven or eight games. I prefer what's best for Newcastle United."

Whereas when the pair last met Sunderland were almost exclusively dependent on Darren Bent to carry their attacking threat (non-existent that day), Coloccini and Co will have more to concern them at the Stadium of Light.

Danny Welbeck's chances of recovering from a hamstring strain appear to be improving, while Asamoah Gyan started to find his feet at the end of a year which saw him shortlisted for the Ballon d'Or and African Footballer of the Year awards. "It will be really difficult but every game is difficult," Coloccini reasoned. "We have good players and a good team. I think it's going to be a good game." While Newcastle have risen to the big occasions this season - also beating Arsenal and Chelsea - their form against the lesser lights has undermined them. …

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