Charlie Nicholas wind-up merchant “Steve Bruce is doing a much better job than what Rafael Benitez did”
You would almost think Charlie Nicholas was just saying things to attract attention…
The clown from Sky Sports on a wind up, hoping plenty of Newcastle fans will bite.
I must admit he has got a bit of talent in this area (winding people up), if only he was as good at doing his expert punditry.
The thing is, Charlie Nicholas doesn’t do subtle, making the statement; ‘Steve Bruce is doing a much better job than what Rafael Benitez did.’
Nothing is won or lost after 14 games.
This season Newcastle are 14th after 14 games, last season NUFC were 15th after 14 games.
Newcastle are four points above the relegation zone at the moment, after 14 matches Newcastle were three points above the relegation line last season.
It is a strange one this season because apart from Liverpool, all the top clubs are dropping a lot more points.
Last season Tottenham were fifth on 30 points after 14 matches, at the moment they are fifth on 20 points.
Under the logic of Charlie Nicholas you could say almost everybody is doing well because the points are shared around so evenly, apart from at the very extremes.
In Rafa Benitez’ two Premier League seasons, Newcastle finished 10th and 13th, so how is being 14th at the moment doing better? It is far too small a snapshot, especially with only five point separating Tottenham fifth top and Brighton fifth bottom.
Newcastle got 44 and 45 points these past two seasons, if NUFC get the same or better then it will have been a decent start for Steve Bruce. Though with £80m spent on three attacking players in 2019, there should be an expectation of improving on those points totals and league positions.
Charlie Nicholas claims about Newcastle: ‘They are very impressive away from home but lack a bit of the cutting edge.’ You get the feeling that he doesn’t bother doing stuff like actually looking at facts, he simply recalls we have won one or two away games (West Ham and Spurs), not realising that NUFC have lost the other five and have scored only six away from home conceding 16.
Charlie Nicholas says: ‘Bruce is clever, he is going back to Sheffield where he will get plenty of abuse but he will have his players pumped up.’
Well Steve Bruce went back to Aston Villa a week ago and got plenty of abuse but the players were anything but pumped up.
For Newcastle fans it isn’t about Steve Bruce v Rafa Benitez, it remains as always, all about Mike Ashley v Newcastle supporters. Supporters who want a club ran on ambitious long-term lines to be the best it can possibly be, something that we know is never going to be the case with Ashley in charge.
Just like under Rafa, we will enjoy individual games and any spells of good form under Steve Bruce, but under this owner we know it is a waste of time trying to enjoy them as part of something bigger, as clubs such as Leicester and Wolves are trying to do.
People such as Charlie Nicholas go on as though Newcastle fans have demanded Steve Bruce has to go but that is most definitely not the case, they see Bruce as simply yet another person trying their best inside the ongoing mess that is Newcastle United under this owner, Mike Ashley is the only person we dream of seeing the back of.
Charlie Nicholas talking to Sky Sports:
“Sheffield United are going great.
“They have 18 points and people are very surprised by the start they’ve made this season.
“They only have four wins in 14 games but have only lost three too.
“They do not lose away from home and they have picked up slightly at home.
“Newcastle are a similar sort of side.
“They are very impressive away from home but lack a bit of the cutting edge.
“Steve Bruce has brought the passion back and they are nicking points here and there.
“I think the Newcastle fans are accepting what Bruce can do with a fairly average bunch.
“Steve Bruce is doing a much better job than what Rafael Benitez did.
“They may only be four points above Southampton but they are better than where they were last season.
“Newcastle are hard to break down and look to counter-attack.
“These are the types of games which the Premier League throw up.
“There are only three points between them so it is not as clear cut as some people might think.
“It is incredibly tight at the bottom.
“It tells you how well some of bottom teams have done.
“Bruce is clever, he is going back to Sheffield where he will get plenty of abuse but he will have his players pumped up.
“If their shape is good, the counter attack will be a strong weapon for them.
“Prediction is Sheffield United 1 Newcastle United 1.”
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