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Thursday 29 March 2012

Williamson: We can cope without Coloccini

Newcastle defender says there is enough quality to cover skipper's absence

Mike Williamson (left) has made 14 Barclays Premier League appearances this season

Newcastle United defender Mike Williamson says his side will be able to cope with the loss of skipper Fabricio Coloccini.

Coloccini has been ruled out of Sunday's Barclays Premier League contest against Liverpool because of a hamstring injury suffered during the victory over West Bromwich Albion last weekend.

Earlier this week, Magpies boss Alan Pardew suggested the 30-year-old Argentine could miss the next four matches.

But despite the setback, Williamson believes there is enough quality in the squad to handle Coloccini's absence.

"We're carrying some momentum at the moment and have got a huge chance against Liverpool"
- Mike Williamson

"It's a big loss. Colo been huge for us this season," Williamson told Newcastle's official website. "He's not only our captain, but also a fantastic player.

"But the second half at West Brom showed that we have enough in the squad to cope without him while he is out.

"Perchy [James Perch] came into the middle and he has been one of our best players in recent weeks. He proved again that he can step in, be it at left-back, centre-half or wherever, and do a brilliant job."

Newcastle have had an impressive season so far and are level on points with fifth-placed Chelsea going into the final eight matches of the season.

The Magpies have won their last two League matches and victory over Liverpool at the Sports Direct Arena would put an 11-point gap between the two sides.

"Liverpool have the likes of Suarez, Andy (Carroll), Downing and many others who can hurt you. They have some fantastic players," added Williamson.

"It will be tough, but hopefully if we can apply ourselves like we did last weekend at West Brom then it can be a good game.

"We're carrying some momentum at the moment and have got a huge chance against Liverpool.

"There is a great buzz about the place at the moment. We are a hard-working group of lads with a good mentality, and obviously off the back of two good wins we are looking forward to the big game on Sunday."

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Key Points

  • Mike Williamson believes Newcastle can cope without skipper Fabricio Coloccini
  • Coloccini is out of Sunday's match against Liverpool
  • Williamson says there is a real buzz around the club