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Opinion

Steve Bruce declares ‘I don’t want to make excuses’ and then makes loads of…excuses

9 months ago
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To say that the appointment of Steve Bruce was met with disappointment from Newcastle fans would be understatement of the year, possibly decade.

To choose somebody from the lower divisions who has an abysmal past record in the Premier League was bad enough.

However, many of us also dreaded his off the pitch performance, having seen him in action in the past at clubs such as Sunderland, Villa and elsewhere.

Newcastle fans have seen it all before with the likes of Alan Pardew, John Carver and Steve McClaren, full of bluster and excuses when things go wrong, nothingĀ  is ever their fault.

Steve Bruce is very much from that exact same mould, maybe even worse as he has had more years of experience in doing it.

Bruce has massively ridden his luck and totally fluked the majority of the seven wins in 22 games so far.

After the mess that was the game against Leicester City on Wednesday, Steve Bruce announced ‘I don’t want to make excuses’ in the middle of making excuse after excuse, just as he has done repeatedly the past couple of weeks.

Over a month ago he got his excuses in early saying it was ‘ludicrous’ that there were so many games to play in the festive period and he has repeated this at every pre and post-match press conference since.

Imagine if this was a foreign manager going on like that, they would have been absolutely crucified.

Steve Bruce has got away with it because the media refuse to criticise him. Bruce has played and managed his entire career in these conditions of a busy festive schedule of matches. To use it as an excuse now is just embarrassing, it is the same for everybody!

Indeed, back in August after the transfer window, Steve Bruce said he couldn’t have been happier with his squad and the backing he’d had from Mike Ashley.

Steve Bruce says ‘You get injuries by forcing players to play tired. That is not an excuse, it is a fact.’

That is an excuse and not a very good one.

Steve Bruce has repeatedly took unnecessary risks with players when rushing them back too early and/or overplaying them when carrying knocks and/or fatigued, just look at Saint-Maximin.

Nobody forced Steve Bruce to pick that team against Leicester.

Yes not every single player who was knackered could have been taken out the firing line but absolutely no excuses that he left out all of Gayle, Sean Longstaff, Matty Longstaff, Krafth and Atsu, all of them who are desperate for games after hardly playing.

Yes bad luck plays a part of course but managers (and head coaches…) also make a massive contribution and Steve Bruce hs, inn my opinion, undoubtedly significantly contributed to this injury pile-up, just as Alan Pardew used to do when only looking at the next game and not beyond that.

Steve Bruce:

“Look, I said it a month ago, that to ask players to play four games in 10 days, for me, is ludicrous and unfortunately today is the consequence.

“Saturday will be our fifth game in something like fifteen days.

“I didn’t have the bodies to change because we had four or five missing anyway, so it’s been difficult.

“But look, I don’t want to make excuses, it is what it is.

“It’s quite ridiculous, but it’s the way it is.

“I’ve been involved in the game for 40 years but I’ve not seen anything like that.

“We lost four players in 20 minutes and gifted them two goals.

“You get injuries by forcing players to play tired.

“That is not an excuse, it is a fact.

“I was concerned before the match, I made that clear.

“You don’t want it to happen that way.

“It could have been five we lost (during the match) because DeAndre Yedlin broke his hand but he manfully played on.

“In all the years I’ve been involved I don’t think I’ve been involved in a crazy 15 minutes like that.”

Stats (half-time stats in brackets) from BBC Sport:

Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 (Newcastle 0 Leicester 2) – Wednesday 1 January 3pm

Goals:

Leicester:

Perez 36, Maddison 39, Choudhury 87

Possession was Leicester 77% (71%), Newcastle 23% (29%)

Total shots were Leicester 16 (9), Newcastle 5 (4)

Shots on target were Leicester 9 (5), Newcastle 2 (2)

Corners were Leicester 5 (4), Newcastle 4 (3)

Crowd: 52,178 (3,000 Leicester and 10,000 free NUFC season ticket holders, although a massiveĀ  number of empty seats all around St James Park)

Referee: Martin Atkinson

Newcastle team v Leicester:

Dubravka, Manquillo (Krafth 45+3), Schar (forced off on 51 minutes and NUFC down to 10 men), Lejeune, Fernandez, Willems (Yedlin 45), Hayden, Shelvey (Sean Longstaff 46), Almiron, Muto, Joelinton

Unused Subs

Darlow, Atsu, Carroll, Gayle

(3 positives and 3 negatives from Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 – Read HERE)

(Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Wednesday’s defeat – Read HERE)

(Watch official match highlights HERE)

(Steve Bruce confirms Newcastle United now have 11 injured after 6 additions – Read HERE)

(Brendan Rodgers says Leicester win was as easy as when he won 6-0 at Newcastle United – Read HERE)

(Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 – Match ratings and comments on all NUFC players – Read HERE)

(Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 – Thousands of empty seats as injuries save Steve Bruce from proper hammering – Read HERE)

(Today was the first time I have ever felt sorry for Steve Bruce and then I woke up – Read HERE)

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