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Pardew: Gutierrez in great shape amid cancer battle

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew has revealed the club will not rush Jonas Gutierrez as he prepares to resume his career after his battle with testicular cancer.

The popular 31-year-old Argentinian was this week discharged by medics and has been told he could return to training within a month.

However, while his presence at the club's Darsley Park training headquarters will be welcomed by players and staff alike, and in particular close friend Fabricio Coloccini, Gutierrez will be allowed to take his time.

Pardew said: "It's massive news for the squad because he is a much-loved figure here, and to get the all-clear...

"We had a response from his surgeon to say that in about a month's time, he can cope with professional training, so we are not rushing him in any shape or form, just letting Jonas have some time because it's such an illness that you do need a lot of recovery time for that.

"But he's in great shape. Colo tells me he is in good form and we are looking forward to seeing him."

But while the Magpies prepare to welcome back one man, another is preparing for a lengthy spell on the sidelines, this time with a football-related problem.

Midfielder Gabriel Obertan has undergone surgery to repair the thigh muscle he damaged during last Saturday's 1-0 Premier League win over Liverpool, with reports suggesting he could be out for anywhere up to five months.

Pardew was not going as far as that as he admitted the Frenchman will be missing for a minimum of six to eight weeks at a time when he had started to fulfil the potential in which Newcastle invested when they signed him from Manchester United during the summer of 2011.

He said: "He (Obertan) has torn the muscle in his thigh and will be out for some time. What that will be, no idea, but certainly not in the short term.

"He has been terrific for us. We had got him in a great place and he was playing with such confidence and thrust that it took the team forward, so it is a blow to us and although we had such a tremendous result against Liverpool, losing Gabby was the blow of the day.

"Hopefully we can cope with it with the players that we have, but we feel for him and we send our best regards from all the players and the staff here to him, and the fans, because he has been a big part of what we have done.

"I think it's just one of those things that we have to wait and see. He's had an operation and it's six to eight weeks minimum."

Obertan will be joined on the sidelines for Sunday's trip to West Brom by fellow midfielder Cheick Tiote, who is struggling to shake off a thigh injury and will not be joining up with the Ivory Coast squad next week as a result.

Youngster Rolando Aarons, who impressed after taking over from Obertan last weekend, is a doubt with an unspecified knock, while striker Papiss Cisse continues to battle a reaction to the screws used to repair his fractured kneecap.

ends


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