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The Toe Poke

Coloccini pledges future to Newcastle

Fabricio Coloccini has assured Newcastle United fans that he wants to remain on Tyneside despite not yet putting pen to paper on a new deal with the club.

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The 30-year-old Argentine, who enters the final year of his contract this summer, has failed to agree terms on a new deal but was quick to dismiss fears that he could force owner Mike Ashley to cash in on a transfer at the end of the season or risk losing the club captain for free in 18 months' time.

But the Coloccini would rather focus on matters on the pitch, with Newcastle in the hunt for a place in Europe next season and preparing for the visit of Sunderland on Sunday.

"We have to think about each game - not the Champions League or Europa League," said Coloccini. "We just have to give 100% in every game.

"And then when there are four or five games left in the league we can weigh up which competition we are going for."

Newcastle have been one of the league's surprise packages this season, with talk of European qualification a far cry from the agony of relegation from the top flight just three years ago.

Keen to consolidate the club's recent success, Ashley backed manager Alan Pardew with funds to strengthen his squad in January and the duo are in talks on how to improve the squad over the summer.

"Of course I want to stay," said Coloccini when asked if he would like to be a part of those plans. "We're speaking. It's a normal process. Everything is okay."

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