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Mother of former Newcastle player Jonas Gutierrez says she 'considered taking her own life'

Former Newcastle star Jonas Gutierrez Credit: PA

The mother of former Newcastle star Jonas Gutierrez has claimed she considered taking her own life - after he was "thrown out like a bad dog" following his cancer diagnosis.

In evidence supporting the Argentina international's disability discrimination claim, Monica Montore said she was so upset with Newcastle's hierarchy she wanted to leave a suicide note for club officials.

Gutierrez is reported to be seeking around £2 million in compensation after alleging Newcastle "ensured" he did not start in enough matches to trigger an automatic extension clause in his contract.

The 32-year-old further claims that Newcastle told him his future lay elsewhere and viewed him as a "liability" after he was diagnosed with testicular cancer in October 2013.

Addressing an employment tribunal in Birmingham, Ms Montore claimed she discussed the issue of suicide with one of her son's lawyers, Colin Pomford, in January 2014.

Ms Montore, who acts as her son's manager, was assisted by a Spanish interpreter as she told the hearing:

"I was so distressed at what they had done to Jonas that I just wanted to take my own life at the club's door.

"I was going to leave a letter to say what a terrible way they had treated Jonas.

"He returns from his operation to have lost a testicle - from a hit on Newcastle's pitch...he returns from that operation and they throw him out like a bad dog."

In a written witness statement submitted to the tribunal, Ms Montore, a company director who lives in Argentina, said she acted as her son's manager in respect of key professional decisions, and had selected Pedro Bravo as his agent in June 2008.

The statement said Ms Montore was "so upset and helpless about the way Jonas was being treated" that it compounded her distress at his cancer diagnosis.

The footballer's mother added:

"I told Colin that I felt so desperate and low about the situation that I considered harming myself.

"I asked Colin what the club would do if I were to commit suicide at the stadium, leaving a note explaining that this was due to the despair that I felt about the discrimination my son was facing by the club.

"Looking back, even expressing such thoughts looks extreme but I cannot deny that it happened and it brings back very clear memories."

Ms Montore also disputed elements of documents submitted to the tribunal by Newcastle's managing director, Lee Charnley, which state that the club kept in touch with family members "to ensure that they knew that Jonas remained in our thoughts".

Ms Montore said:

"This is categorically not the case as I remember feeling upset that the club seemed to show a lack of interest in Jonas's welfare once the cancer was diagnosed.

"Apart from one email from the club doctor to Jonas on October 17 asking for my contact details for the doctor in Argentina, I did not receive any telephone calls or emails from the club and neither did Jonas."

Under cross-examination from Newcastle's barrister, Sean Jones QC, Ms Montore was asked to explain why she had not raised her concerns about discrimination directly with the club.

Mr Jones asked Montore:

"You were going to raise the subject of discrimination in a suicide note? If you had genuinely thought that your son was being discriminated against - rather than just treated insensitively - you would have raised it formally wouldn't you?"

Ms Montore answered:

*"I think you are trying to dress a monkey with a silk dress and trying to pretend that it is a princess." * The hearing continues.


Professional boxing to return to Newcastle

Steve Wraith with Jeff Saunders Credit: Single Vert Photography 2016

Professional boxing will return to Newcastle later this year.

Tyneside promoter-manager, Steve Wraith will bring the sport back to St. James' Park.

The initial holding of three-four shows in the Bamburgh Suite at the football stadium will begin later this year. The first official event will be ‘An Evening with Riddick Bowe’ on April 9th.

I’m a lifelong Newcastle fan myself so to be able to match the two (boxing and Newcastle United) is perfect for me.

– Tyneside promoter-manager, Steve Wraith

Jonas Gutierrez: Newcastle "considered me a liability" after cancer

Former Newcastle midfielder Jonas Gutierrez Credit: PA

Former Newcastle midfielder Jonas Gutierrez has claimed he was "frozen out" of the first team by the club's hierarchy - which, he believes, viewed him as a liability after his cancer diagnosis.

In a statement to an employment tribunal hearing his claim for disability discrimination, the 32-year-old also accused Newcastle of ensuring he did not make enough appearances to trigger a one-year contract extension.

Gutierrez, currently playing for Spanish side Deportivo La Coruna, spent seven seasons with Newcastle after joining the club in 2008, and underwent an operation to remove a tumour in his left testicle in October 2013.

In his statement to the tribunal, the midfielder said he was called into then manager Alan Pardew's office in early December 2013 - when he felt he was returning to full fitness - to be told that he did not feature in Newcastle's future plans, and was free to agree terms with another club.

Describing the meeting, Gutierrez said:

"This was the first time I - or any of my representatives - had been notified of this and it came as a great shock, so soon after my cancer treatment.

I was very shocked by the club's sudden change of heart about me, particularly as I had played in 194 games for the club at this point and was one of the key first team players."

Pointing out that the decision was taken when he still had 19 months remaining on his contract, Gutierrez added:

"I believe that the reason for this was due to my cancer diagnosis and very recent operation to remove the tumour.

I think they feared my illness would mean that I could no longer play at the highest level and they considered me to be a liability rather than an asset to the club.

I got the impression that they thought I couldn't be the same player again after such an illness or that I would be bound to have lingering effects, other episodes of illness off the back of it.

This caused me a lot of distress, given my hard work and commitment for the club in the preceding five and a half years."

Gutierrez, who earned around £40,000-a-week during his time with Newcastle, is reported to be seeking a payment of around £2 million after missing out on an "automatic" 12-month extension to a four-year contract, which would have kicked in if he had started 80 games between 2011 and 2015.

The player, who in fact made 78 starts and five appearances as a substitute, said in his statement:

"It is notable that during my chemotherapy treatment, neither the manager, Alan Pardew, or any club directors contacted me to see how

I was feeling or to congratulate me on my recovery.

Shortly after my return to the club from chemotherapy, I was called into Mr Pardew's office.

Mr Pardew apologised for the way he had treated me in December 2013, when he told me I was not wanted by the club any longer but he said that this was not his decision.

I understood by this that the decision was actually that of the club's owner, Mike Ashley."

In his evidence, Gutierrez said he had agreed to "draw a line under the past" with Pardew, but the manager moved to Crystal Palace within a month of the conversation.

Owner Mike Ashley to stand by Newcastle - even if they are relegated

Owner Mike Ashley will stand by Newcastle even if they are relegated because he is "wedded" to the club Credit: PA

Owner Mike Ashley will stand by Newcastle even if they are relegated because he is "wedded" to the club.

That's what he told reporters at a Sports Direct warehouse in Derbyshire.

The Sports Direct magnate faces the prospect of seeing the Magpies slip out of the Barclays Premier League for the second time in his near nine-year stint as owner if they cannot turn their season around over the final eight games.

But Ashley, who this month sanctioned the appointment of former Real Madrid boss Rafael Benitez in place of the sacked Steve McClaren, insists he is going nowhere should the worst happen.

Newcastle, who battled back to snatch a 1-1 derby draw with Sunderland on Sunday, find themselves in trouble at the foot of the table despite spending more than £82million during the last two transfer windows.

They currently sit in 19th place and three points adrift of safety.

"I'm wedded to Newcastle, like Sports Direct.

They have got me and I have got them, that's just the way it is.

I think we have the right man in the job.

If there's any chance of us staying up, let's hope Rafa can do the business and keep us up there."

– Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley

Benitez seeks derby boost to Newcastle's survival push

Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez is urging his team to ignite their survival drive with derby victory over Sunderland.

The Magpies entertain the Black Cats on Sunday knowing their very existence in the Barclays Premier League, and the £100million share of the new broadcasting deal which comes with it, are at stake with just nine games of an intensely difficult campaign remaining.

However, Benitez believes a win over their arch-rivals could give them just the impetus they need to drag themselves out of trouble.

Watch his press conference here:


WATCH: Benitez's first NUFC press conference in full

Rafael Benitez gave his first press conference at St James' Park today. He came with a positive demeanour and said he thinks the Magpies are good enough to avoid relegation this season.

He said: "If I am here it is because these players are good enough to stay in the Premier League."

Watch the full press conference here:

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