Fabricio Colocinni- A Recognisable figure beyond the hair

Today Fabricio Colocinni, the 29 year-old Argentinean centre half and Newcastle United captain is instantly a recognisable presence in the Magpies rearguard. Conversely, upon his transfer from Deportivo La Courna, Colocinni was once upon a time remembered solely for his big bright hair during Newcastle’s dim relegation campaign in 2009.

Now just two and a half years later since that fateful day in May for the Toon Army, Newcastle sit pretty occupying the dizzy heights of 3rd position in the Premier League. More impressively the ST James’ Park outfit remain unbeaten in the league after 11 matches and Colocinni in particular is being lauded due to the fact his side currently boast the best defensive record in the country shipping a mere 8 goals all season.

On the surface it seem relatively straight forward why a captain of a side sitting just 1 point behind Manchester United in the league table deserves special praise for his side’s defensive solidity, but it wasn’t too long ago that praising a Newcastle defender was a rarity to any pundit or fan.

Since his arrival to English football in the summer of 2008, the defender’s wacky hairstyle reminiscent of former Newcastle player and manager Kevin Keegan’s in the 80’s, automatically caught the eye of football fans alike in the country, who more often than not found a link between the craziness of his hair and the erratic nature of his defending.

During his first season at the club aside from his uncanny resemblance to having an identical hair style to that of Sideshow Bob from television Sitcom The Simpson’s, Colocinni was largely remembered for his suicidal defending during the 5-1 home defeat to Liverpool.

Although a part of the Newcastle side that kept only 6 clean sheets in the league the underlying statistic was the fact Colocinni had 34 caps for Argentina to his name and plied his trade in an established side in Spain’s La Liga. So perhaps the unwritten rule of 1 season adaptation to the Premier League usually given to foreign players upon signing for a Premier League club was unjustly used against Colocinni?

Since being ever present during Newcastle’s promotion season the Argentine has thrived at helping establish the Geordies back in the Premier League and under the guidance of former defender Alan Pardew has helped the Magpies flourish defensively. After being made captain during pre season, ‘Colo’ as he is known to Newcastle fans, is marshalling the defence superbly demonstrating fine leadership skills accompanied by a string of outstanding displays already. Which in turn have led to interest reportedly mounting for the defender’s signature, Newcastle’s resolve could yet be tested arguably even more so than when they sold local hero Andy Carroll for £35 million in January.

The rejuvenation of Colocinni individually as well as the sides has ensured for the time being parity has been restored at ST James’ Park, however after selling star players Andy Carroll and Jose Enrique will it take another club more than a low hand to prize away Newcastle’s captain? Who knows but one thing is for sure and that’s Colocinni is now a far cry from being known as just the man with the frizzy hair.

Simon Blaquiere @simonblaquiere1

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