Alan Pardew has admitted that Fabricio Coloccini is still yet to sign a new contract with Newcastle, with the manager wary of offers from big clubs as he pushes the centre back to commit to the Toon.
Coloccini is a big part of Pardew’s plans for the future, with the Argentine international starring for Newcastle, particularly in the absence of big players Kevin Nolan and Joey Barton.
And today Pardew insisted that while they haven’t come to an agreement yet, so long as Manchester United and Manchester City don’t come knocking, Coloccini will stay at St James’ Park.
"I have got to be honest, I think we are okay, that's about the only sign I can give you," he said.
"You have got two parties here, you have got a club offering a contract to Colo, but really it's about Colo. If he agrees to the contract, then all's well and good.
"It's difficult because his agent is Argentina-based and doesn't have particularly great English either, so we are waiting for him to come back across, and we think we can get the deal done."
While Pardew admitted that United and City would be able to turn Coloccini’s head, he argued that Newcastle’s success so far is making a new deal closer than ever.
"If he takes the shine of [Manchester United manager Sir] Alex Ferguson or [Manchester City boss Roberto] Mancini, then we will have a problem.
"But the more success we have, the more chances we have got of the player actually saying 'I'll stay'.
"The financial position we are starting to get ourselves into gives us a chance to maybe compete a little bit stronger for those players who are threatened.
"That's why this season is very, very important.
"At football clubs, when you get the feeling we have at the moment, if we can keep that, then we are going to have a successful year, I don't doubt it."