Captain Fabricio Coloccini proud of Newcastle United role

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FABRICIO Coloccini has vowed to let his feet do the talking as Newcastle United captain.

The defender – who will lead the club out against Sporting Kansas City tonight – was named as Kevin Nolan’s successor as skipper earlier in the summer.

While not the most vocal of players on the field, Coloccini is confident he can stamp his authority on the role.

And the 29-year-old Argentinian believes his quiet-style on the field won’t be a hindrance to his ambition of leading Newcastle to a top-10 Premier League finish.

“It will be a really good moment for me when I captain the team,” Coloccini said.

“There are a lot of big players here – like Joey Barton and Harps – and they know the club, and that’s why, for me, it was a surprise.

“It’s a present for me – I am very proud. I am very happy, and I will try to do the best for the team.

“I don’t talk too much on the pitch, and I will maybe be a different captain to Kevin. I am more quiet on the pitch, but on the training ground and in the dressing room I can say more to the team.

“All the players will try to help me, and that is important.”

Coloccini sat out Newcastle’s first friendly – Friday’s 2-0 win at Darlington – but he’s relishing tonight, despite the prospect of playing in intense heat.

“For us, it’s an important game,” said Coloccini, who is wary of United’s opponents given that they are midway through the Major League Soccer season.

“They are playing big games, and they are fit. We’re in pre-season, and we have to adapt to the conditions.”

On his hopes for the new campaign, Coloccini added: “The new players that have come in are good players, and I hope we will do well this season.

“We did well last year, and I hope we have another good season, but I think the first step is to stay in the Premier League, and when we do that, we can start to think about other things.”

Teenage midfielder Mehdi Abeid will make his second Newcastle appearance tonight. And Abeid, signed from French club Lens, is determined to build on his bright start to life on Tyneside.

“There are some great players in this team, and I must battle to get past them,” said Abeid. “I can do well for the club this season. Hatem (Ben Arfa) and Demba (Ba) have helped me a lot already. It’s good to have them around while I settle in.

“It’s a big challenge for me, and I hope to play in a lot of games this season.”