JONAS Gutierrez says Newcastle United’s players have to take a look at themselves – as there can be “no excuses” between now and the end of the season.
John Carver’s squad has been decimated by injury and suspension.
Captain Fabricio Coloccini will miss the next three games after his dismissal at Goodison Park, and top scorer Papiss Demba Cisse is banned until May.
But Gutierrez – who came off the bench in Sunday’s 3-0 defeat to Everton – does NOT think the absentees can excuse below-par performances.
And he feels the 11th-placed team can STILL finish in the top half of the Premier League.
“As a team, we have look inside and think what we’re doing wrong,” Gutierrez told the Gazette.
As a team, we have look inside and think what we’re doing wrong.Jonas Gutierrez
“We have to do better and work hard for the manager and the team.
“It’s not enough. This is the Premier League. We know we have a team that is young. We have to look forward and improve. We have to learn game by game, day by day.
“We’re frustrated by the (Everton) result, but we have to look inside and do better.
“We don’t have enough players at the moment – Colo is banned for three games – but we have to keep together and work hard for the manager.
“The manager will tell us what we have to do.
“We have to do it right on the pitch. No excuses, we have to do it better.”
Carver will have to reshuffle his defence for Saturday’s home game against Arsenal, and Argentina international Gutierrez is an option to play at full-back, having previously played there for club and country.
And the 31-year-old is willing to play anywhere to help the team over the coming weeks.
“Three years ago, when we finished fifth, I played in many positions,” said Gutierrez, who has made two appearances for the club since being given the all-clear late last year after treatment for cancer.
“I was playing in different positions because we had problems with injuries.
“I’m here to help. I work hard and I want to enjoy. Always, I have to do the best for the team.
“We have to finish in the top 10. We don’t have any excuses. We have hard games up to the finish of the season, but we have to take points and finish in the top 10.”
Gutierrez feels third-placed Arsenal are beatable at St James’s Park – if Newcastle’s players can harness the power of their home support.
“We have to believe and be stronger at home,” said Gutierrez.
“We have a magnificent stadium with 52,000 fans. Of course, if we don’t have a good game, the fans are going to be upset.
“If the fans see that we’re doing our best and trying really hard, they are going to be behind us. If not, they are going to be upset.
“We have nine games to go, and we have to look forward and work hard to get the most points that we can.”