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Inspector Steve Bruce Clouseau announces he has opened investigation into Newcastle United injuries

2 weeks ago
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Newcastle United injuries, we have a problem.

With seemingly every additional match bringing new/more injuries, where will it end?

How far can bad luck stretch…or are there other factors at play?

Luckily, Newcastle United have their very own Inspector Clouseau (***A classic with the brilliant Peter Sellers in the lead role, with Alan Arkin, Roger Moore and most recently, Steve Martin, taking on the role. Clouseau is an inept and incompetent French police detective whose investigations quickly turn to chaos. Despite his lack of judgement and skill, Clouseau always solves his cases and finds the correct culprits by sheer luck…) already on the scene…

Steve Bruce had this to say after the Wolves match when asked about the injury problems:

“I didn’t replace or take in any new medical staff (when replacing Rafa Benitez).

“Nothing has changed in that respect.

“We will go into it in depth and I will ask a few questions as to the reasons why.

“Are we just unfortunate?

“Or is there a reason why?

“I have got my own ideas.

“I keep telling everybody that it is the amount of the games we have played.

“When you play people fatigued, even though when we have had a free week this week, you risk that trouble.

“But it is not normally as severe as what we have got.”

The same Steve Bruce had this to say on Saturday after the final whistle…:

“Joelinton had a groin (injury).

“Joelinton should have come off.

“He played at half pace in the second-half but had the courage to carry on.”

So, can NUFC’s very own Inspector Clouseau solve this intriguing case…?

As evidence, we can first look at what Steve Bruce had to say after the match above.

Bruce says it is a total mystery why there are so many injuries at Newcastle BUT then goes on to admit that Joelinton had a groin injury and ‘should have come off’ in the head coach’s very own words.

So for example, if on Tuesday night and/or Saturday teatime, Joelinton is missing due to injury, what we take from that…?

You have the club’s  £40m record signing centre-forward and you take that kind of risk. Surely nothing could be clearer.

If the Brazilian had broken down totally on the pitch yesterday, or is now found to have made the problem so much worse, where should the finger of blame point?

Steve Bruce has a habit of always trying to distance himself from things when they go wrong, often as though he had little influence on what happened. Not being funny but Joelinton was terrible yesterday, fair play to him for staying on but that doesn’t change the fact he contributed next to nothing. Maybe Andy Carroll wasn’t able to play more than 10 minutes (which then raises the question of why he was then on the bench, maybe aggravating his own injury problem(s) if sent on for any decent length of time) but still no reason to keep the Brazilian on if he was at risk. In the second half and certainly the final half hour, Newcastle were only trying to defend anyway, so Joelinton shuffling around was hardly a great help. On the bench you had young striker Tom Allan who turns 21 this year, surely it would have made sense if we were just trying to hold on for a point, to have a young quick striker running his heart out hassling Wolves?

It is amusing (or at least I find it so) when Steve Bruce says that he has came in and changed nothing medical wise, including the medical staff.

It makes me think of that classic situation where somebody is struggling time after time to identify the problem, until somebody more junior has the guts to finally say ‘Maybe it’s you?’….

The medical staff may not have changed but when it comes to decisions, they only go so far, they give the advice but then it falls to the manager, or in this case Head Coach.

Injuries are not an exact science and judging when to once again play a recovering player, or how many matches to play certain player, it all comes down to a mixture of advice, luck, judgement and where you exactly set the line on when to say yes or no on whether somebody should play.

Steve Bruce has referenced Newcastle players saying they are good to play but sometimes players need to be protected from themselves. Any player worth his salt should be saying he is up for playing any match unless his leg is hanging off BUT it is up to the manager/head coach to look at the bigger picture. Short-term pain for long-term gains by looking beyond the next match.

It would be ridiculous to say that Steve Bruce alone is responsible for this injury situation at Newcastle United.

However, at the same time, it would be equally ridiculous, in my opinion, for anybody to claim that Steve Bruce hasn’t been a contributory factor in so many players missing so many matches.

The big question now is whether our very own Inspector Clouseau can somehow accidentally solve the case, either by looking in the mirror or maybe one of those other numerous Steves at St James Park telling the Steve in charge where the big problem might be….

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