A strange situation has now developed with John Carver reacting to Jonas Gutierrez saying he had been fit and available for weeks to get back involved with first team football.

Jonas having said:

“I am available as of a few weeks ago – I have a situation in my contract and things like that which mean that I am not sure if I’m going to get the opportunity to play.”

The situation with his contract would appear to be the previously much reported clause that if he the Argentine winger plays a certain number of matches then he is entitled to a contract extension.

However, John Carver says that Gutierrez isn’t ready to play first team football, so who do you believe?:

John Carver speaking to the Shields Gazette:

“I am waiting for the right time and it’s not right at the moment.

“I can see that on the training ground – he has come back from a serious situation and I am not putting any pressure on him.”

A lot of competition:

“I don’t know (Jonas play for Newcastle again?), I would like to think so but it has got to be right.

“He’s got to compete to get on the left hand side and there is a lot of competition there, more than we have had for a long time.”

Ironically, when interviewed Jonas actually was at pains to say how much he wanted Carver to get the job on a longer term basis:

“You always want the best for the manager, I have known John from five years ago, I hope that they (Carver and current set-up) can get it and stay permanent.”

I suppose there may be also a middle ground. For example I don’t think there is any way that Ryan Taylor could have played a full game against Manchester City but he was fit enough to come on as a substitute.

With Jonas, he has been back training for around two and a half months now and played a number of Under 21 and behind closed doors friendly matches, so it is doubtful he is going to be in any better condition in a few weeks time.

I don’t think Jonas Gutierrez is the player he was a few years ago but then there again, our team isn’t either.

As for John Carver’s claims that there has never been more competition, when you see Vurnon Anita and Yoan Gouffran in the team, I fail to see how Jonas Gutierrez could do any worse.