Jonas Gutierrez says the players must take responsibility for Newcastle United’s plight – and fight to the last whistle to keep the club in the Premier League.
Gutierrez and his team-mates take on West Ham United tomorrow knowing only a win would guarantee top-flight survival.
John (Carver) gives us the education to get the points. Then, on the pitch, we have to take responsibility for what is going on. Now we have to be together.Jonas Gutierrez
Newcastle, however, have taken just one point from a possible 30.
And last weekend’s 2-1 defeat to relegated Queens Park Rangers at Loftus Road, and Sunderland’s midweek draw at Arsenal, seemingly edged the club closer to the relegation trapdoor.
Head coach John Carver has come under fire from angry fans given the injury and suspension-hit team’s sorry record in recent months.
But Gutierrez – who experienced the pain of relegation with United in 2009 – says Carver can only do so much on the training field.
And he insists the responsibility for results, ultimately, lies at the door of the players.
“We are the players on the pitch – we try to do the best,” said Gutierrez.
“John gives us the education to get the points. Then, on the pitch, we have to take responsibility for what is going on. Now we have to be together.”
Carver, speaking ahead of the West Ham game, implored the club’s supporters to put their differences with him and owner Mike Ashley to one side for 90 minutes at St James’s Park.
He said there would be an “inquest” into this season’s failings once the last ball has been kicked.
However, Gutierrez – who made an inspirational return to the field earlier this year after being given the all-clear following treatment for testicular cancer in his native Argentina, says now is NOT the time to apportion blame.
“I don’t like to think who is at fault,” he said.
“We are the players that are on the pitch, and we have to think what we’re doing wrong and to change it.
“We have just one week, and we have to be focused.”