When Jonas Gutierrez was over in Argentina during the winter transfer window trying to sort out a move back to his first club Velez Sarsfield, it appeared that the last chance had gone of saying his goodbyes to the Newcastle fans.

For whatever reason(s) the move didn’t happen, yet, but the upside for Jonas and the United supporters was that yesterday happened.

Jonas Gutierrez back involved in the matchday 18 and the mutual appreciation society given its chance, especially in the 18th minute which had been the regular minute of applause while he was recovering from cancer, due to that being his shirt number.

The Argentine midfielder had previously talked of not being able to go back to St. James’ Park and watch his teammates playing, as it was too difficult emotionally.

Before, during and after the Villa match he looked relaxed and full of smiles, this is what he had to say after the 1-0 victory to the official club website:

“A very special moment, it was unbelievable to be back, in the squad and on the bench.

“On Thursday I spoke with JC (John Carver) and he asked how I felt,  I told him I felt good and that I was ready.”

A big, big step:

“I know I am not 100 per cent because that will only come with time on the pitch, in games, but that’s the last part.

“Since I returned to Newcastle, all I have wanted is to be back in the team- today is a big, big step towards being back on that pitch.”

Unbelievable support:

“The fans were unbelievable but they always have been, ever since I arrived in Newcastle seven years ago.

“Their support has increased even more since my illness and I wish to thank them for that because they’ve sent me a lot of love and support. “