Liverpool target Jose Enrique quiet on Newcastle future

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The Independent Football

Newcastle full-back Jose Enrique is maintaining a diplomatic silence over his future as manager Alan Pardew looks to next season.

The 25-year-old Spaniard has been widely tipped to leave Tyneside this summer after stalling on a new contract, with Liverpool reportedly heading the queue to acquire his services.

However, Pardew has not given up hope of persuading he, Joey Barton and skipper Kevin Nolan to extend their stays at St James' Park.

Enrique played his part in securing the club's Barclays Premier League status with a 2-1 victory over Birmingham on Saturday and was serenaded by the Toon Army, but he was giving little away about what may lie ahead for him afterwards.

He told the Evening Chronicle: "It is always nice to hear that, but we will what happens.

"The most important thing is the team. I know the fans like me a lot, but we will see."

In the meantime, the former Villarreal defender will concentrate on Newcastle's final two games - Sunday's trip to Chelsea and then a home clash with West Brom - and the prospect of a top-10 finish, or at least one that keeps them above derby rivals Sunderland.

Enrique said: "To finish in the top 10 is important this season.

"We will see what happens next year and which players come to us. We have a great squad here though, and we have been very unlucky with injuries.

"Next season we will hopefully get new players and try to build on a top-10 finish.

"It would be very nice for us to finish ahead of Sunderland. I remember they were happy to see us go down, but now we are in the Premier League and we have been better than them so far - it's important we keep going."