DANNY Guthrie is putting uncertainly over his future to the back of his mind as he focuses on helping Newcastle United into Europe.
The midfielder is hoping to keep his place for Sunday’s visit to West Bromwich Albion, who won at the Sports Direct Arena in December.
Guthrie, out of contract at the end of the season, was in the side beaten 3-1 at The Hawthorns last season, the defeat spelling the end of Chris Hughton’s tenure at the club.
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has built on his predecessor’s achievements and United have already surpassed last season’s Premier League points total. Qualifying for the Europa League is the aim for Pardew’s team, who are just two points behind Chelsea, and five ahead of Liverpool.
Guthrie, wanted by Aston Villa, is expected to leave the club this summer in search of regular first-team football, having become frustrated at the time he’s spent on the bench this season.
However, in the meantime, the 24-year-old’s focused on helping Newcastle return to Europe after a five-year absence.
“Getting into the Europa League would be fantastic for us, because it wasn’t expected of us at the start of the season,” Guthrie said.
“It’s within our grasp. If we keep working in the last nine games, we can get there. We just need to show our determination until the end of the season.
“It’ll be tough, the away games are always difficult, but hopefully we’ll have a couple of players back. There’ll be a few more options for the manager.”
Pardew is hopeful Guthrie’s midfield colleague Cheik Tiote will be fit to face Roy Hodgson’s side on Sunday.