Eleven months after playing his last competitive match, testicular cancer surviver Jonas Gutierrez made his emotional return in the 65th minute of Newcastle’s match against Man United. He was given a standing ovation by the crowd at St. James’ Park and the captain’s armband by teammate and fellow Argentine Fabricio Coloccini, even though Coloccini didn’t exit the match.
Newcastle lost 1-0 on an 89th-minute goal from Ashley Young (who was set up perfectly by Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul), but the night was still a joyous one for Gutierrez and everyone else with a bit of perspective. From Sportal:
“I will remember for the rest of my life the reception,” [Gutierrez] told BT Sport. “I’m really happy with the reception and the support the fans gave me and the support through the illness.
“The support I have had from clubs all around the world, it doesn’t matter about the shirt, it has helped me keep fighting.
“For people having the trouble I have been through, you have to be positive. If you believe in the heart you can beat the problems, you can.”
Gutierrez was shown a yellow card just two minutes after entering the game, though — proving once and for all that referees are soulless monsters.