Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Jon[beta]s Is Hoping Enrique Will Stay

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Jon[beta]s Is Hoping Enrique Will Stay

Article excerpt

Byline: Stuart Rayner

JONAS Gutirrez is desperately hoping his unique relationship with Jos Enrique is not about to enter its final days.

Gutirrez regards the left-back as a Spain international of the not-too distant future, and one of the four best in that position in the Premier League.

With Enrique (right) stalling on the offer of a new contract, there is a very real possibility Sunday's game at home to West Bromwich Albion will be the 25-year-old's last for the Magpies.

Liverpool, Bayern Munich and AC Milan are some of the clubs thought to be considering an approach.

The "Three Amigos" of Enrique, Gutirrez and fellow Argentinian Fabricio Coloccini are extremely close on and off the field, a triumvirate the left-winger is anxious to see kept in tact for personal and professional reasons.

"It is very important for me to have those guys around me, more outside the pitch than on the pitch," he said.

"But on the pitch, what I have down the left side with Jos is something no other Premier League team has. It is a very special relationship. We have an amazing understanding, almost telepathic. Having Jos playing the way he does is brilliant for me and because we get on so well, we know what each other is thinking."

Like most modern full-backs, the Spaniard poses a potent attacking threat, while Gutirrez is comfortable defensively, as he proved by playing right-back for Argentina at the last World Cup. Enrique's contract does not expire until next summer, and so he cannot leave without the club's say-so. But having paid pounds 6.5m for him four years ago, owner Mike Ashley would be reluctant to lose such a coveted player for free. Enrique harbours international ambitions which would be enhanced by the regular European football the Magpies are currently unable to offer. Although breaking into Spain's team is no easy task, Gutirrez believes it is something one of the "best players" he has played with can achieve sooner rather than later. …

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