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Burnley 0-0 draw and 7 goals in 12 games – Steve Bruce says ‘easy decision’ not to start Saint-Maximin

4 months ago
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Steve Bruce promised attacking football ahead of this season, always on the front foot he said.

Shamefully still blaming Rafa Benitez despite three quarters of the way through the season with himself in charge, Steve Bruce declared ahead of playing Burnley, that once again Newcastle fans would see a change to attacking football.

We are still waiting.

Newcastle fans watching a dull 0-0 draw and booing Steve Bruce at the final whistle, as Nick Pope in the Burnley game didn’t have a difficult save to make.

Steve Bruce claiming after the final whistle: ‘We have had one, two, three, four big opportunities and we didn’t take them. And you know in this league you are not going to get much more than that.’

The problem is, Bruce’s football has been so dire and negative, that now he counts any chances/shots as ‘big opportunities’…

He will literally say anything, we could be listening to Pardew, JFK, Carver or McClaren, they would also just claim anything to deflect blame.

Only seven goals in 12 Premier League games and one win in 10, no goals in over six hours of PL football and as for fans turning up to St James Park, it will be one PL goal in 11 weeks at home when the next home (Sheff Utd) game comes around.

Steve Bruce proudly declares ‘We’ve got the second best defensive record at home’ in terms of goals and yet fails to mention only Palace have a worse offensive record at home in terms of goals, now only 12 goals in 14 SJP matches.

I always dreaded Steve Bruce ending up as Newcastle manager and he is even worse than I feared, on and off the pitch.

As for Allan Saint-Maximin not starting and getting only the final 13 minutes, Steve Bruce said/claimed that he was worried about ASM possibly getting injured as he’d had a ‘sore’ hamstring this week. I would have thought in such a poor game of few chances, you would give ASM 30 minutes or so, or leave him out altogether if you had real injury worries.

Steve Bruce speaking to Sky Sports:

“I was pleased with a lot of aspects.

“We have gone to a back four for only the second time this season and we have managed to keep a clean sheet.

“So that’s always a positive in the big league.

“We have had one, two, three, four big opportunities and we didn’t take them.

“And you know in this league you are not going to get much more than that.

“We thought after two disappointing results we’d do something different.

“It’s nice to have something different that you can go to and people know their jobs.

“Joe(linton) was played to a side in Germany and what we have seen of him, he’s better suited (to play wide left) at this moment in time.

“We need to score goals and we will keep persevering.”

Steve Bruce talking to BBC Newcastle:

“I thought we carried a better threat going forward.

“We had some big opportunities but, unfortunately, didn’t take them.

“That’s been our Achilles heel.

“When disappointed with results, you can change the system or personnel.

“For a long time, they’ve played a certain way and I didn’t want to tamper with it because they’re very comfortable.

“We thought we’d try something different.

“We’ve got the second best defensive record at home but I’m sure fans will be saying ‘yeah, but we don’t score enough!’

“We haven’t been able to take our chances.

“Unfortunately, we didn’t get the win but there were positives to take from it.”

Steve Bruce talking to the club site:

“I was pleased with some aspects like the clean sheet.

When you change shape you worry if that defensive stability that we have had remains. We pride ourselves on that, especially at home.

“I was particularly pleased for Dwight Gayle. He hasn’t been able to really play for the past seven months and I thought he caused a threat. I think Almirón’s best position is off the front and he did OK as well.

“I didn’t think he [Allan Saint-Maximin] was right all week in training.

“On Thursday he was a little bit sore around his hamstring.

“That’s always going to be the case with him.

“In that respect it was an easy decision [not to start him].”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Newcastle 0 Burnley 0  – Saturday 29 February 3pm

Goals:

Possession was Burnley 46% Newcastle 54%

Total shots were Burnley 8 Newcastle 21

Shots on target were Burnley 1 Newcastle 4

Corners were Burnley 7 Newcastle 11

Referee: Andy Madley

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Manquillo, Fernandez, Lascelles, Rose, Hayden, Shelvey, Ritchie, Almiron, Joelinton (Allan Saint-Maximin 77), Gayle

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Schar, Lejeune, Yedlin, Sean Longstaff, Bentaleb

Crowd: 52,219 (Burnley 2,400)

(Newcastle 0 Burnley 0 – Boos at final whistle as no goals in over 6 hours and 1 win in 10 for Steve Bruce – Read HERE)

(Newcastle 0 Burnley 0 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Saturday’s dull draw – Read HERE)

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