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Opinion

‘Above all else I just hope Steve Bruce finally releases the shackles tonight as this just isn’t working’

11 months ago
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I’m interested to see what team selection Steve Bruce goes with at Bramall Lane tonight.

Also interested of course to see is he changes his formation against Sheffield United.

However, more than anything, I am interested to see what exactly happens once the match kicks off.

To see if the NUFC Head Coach has realised/accepted that what he is doing at the moment isn’t helping in any way.

Yes we all know you don’t have a choice when playing the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City, that defending deep is almost certainly the way to go in an attempt to try and stifle the opposition and stay in the game. Giving you the small chance that if they are on an off day and don’t punish you, don’t take their chances, then if you take the one or two that come your way on the break then just maybe you get something.

I can even understand it, to an extent against the odd other team such as Spurs and Chelsea.

However, it is just plain stupidity to do it against the likes of Watford, Norwich, Bournemouth, Aston Villa, Brighton and…Sheffield United.

Why on earth would you have your team playing so deep and negatively against these teams?

No disrespect to them but we need to be 10 or 20 yard further up the pitch and go toe to toe with them.

How Steve Bruce has laid his Newcastle team out against these type of teams has contributed nothing positive.

Yes Newcastle ended up with draws against Brighton and Watford at home but that was pure luck, we got away with it. Both of those teams were allowed to dominate possession from the kick-off and had far more chances.

Same against Bournemouth, they were given the freedom of St James Park in the first half, scored once and wasted some sitters, then two massive strokes of luck gifted Newcastle two goals that won the game. Yes Newcastle finished the game strongly but the Cherries were a broken team as they knew they had wasted a golden opportunity to finish us off in the first half.

At Norwich and Aston Villa they did punish us. Allowed to get on top, they got the goals their domination deserved and coasted to easy wins.

Sheffield United have only lost this season when conceding the first goal.

When they have scored first, the Blades have won four of the six and only against Man Utd and Wolves did they have to settle for a point after going ahead.

So, above all else, I just hope Steve Bruce finally releases the shackles tonight as this just isn’t working.

Defending so deep with such negative tactics right from the kick-off is just inviting the opposition, even mediocre/poor ones, to control the game and score the first goal.

Let’s get on the attack and see if our expensive (by Newcastle standards) attacking players actually carry a serious goal threat if given the platform to go and have a go.

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