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Steve Bruce reacts “Why’s everybody getting their knickers in a twist? The decisions are right.”

4 weeks ago
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Steve Bruce was a happy man on Saturday night.

He was also a relieved one.

Newcastle United have had relatively little interaction with VAR this season but at St Mary’s it played a key role.

VAR reducing Southampton to 10 men and then awarding a penalty to NUFC just before the break.

Alex McCarthy producing a quality save to deny Matt Ritchie though.

To nobody’s surprise, Steve Bruce is suddenly VAR’s biggest fan:|’The penalty is a blatant handball. I didn’t see it at the time, I have to be honest. But, it’s stonewall penalty. Why’s everybody getting their knickers in a twist? The decisions are right.’

If this had been last season, with no VAR, Newcastle wouldn’t have seen their opponents having to play the final hour with 10 men and there would have been no penalty.

All credit to ASM for pouncing on a Southampton defender’s mistake in the final stages but without the VAR intervention you wonder what the outcome might have been today…

Steve Bruce talking to BBC Newcastle:

“A big result.

“It has a been a good week.

“I was delighted with us, we were better when they had 11 because it was more of a contest.

“We’ve had some great opportunities – I don’t think we could have wished for better ones. Then you wonder if it’s your day.

“We haven’t come up against that before, when a team sits so deep and we have to go and then beat them.

“We didn’t create much (in second half) but the one break we had, Allan(Saint-Maximin) stuck it in.

“Only our 25th goal in the Premier League.

“We had all our attacking players on. I even had a wide player (Lazaro) at full back to try to get forward.

“It’s difficult to break down. We’ve played like that (all season): organised and disciplined behind the ball.”

“I’ve seen Ritchie smash them (penalties) in, in training, and demanding that he’s the penalty taker, like he demands everything!

“And he’s missed. It happens to the best of us. I didn’t watch it.

“VAR and the referee got it right (on the red card) it’s a bad challenge and could damage Isaac.

“It’s damaged him, slightly, but not as badly as we thought. The boy is over the top of the ball.

“The penalty is a blatant handball. I didn’t see it at the time, I have to be honest. But, it’s stonewall penalty.

“Why’s everybody getting their knickers in a twist? The decisions are right.”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Southampton 0 Newcastle 1  – Saturday 7 March 3pm

Goals:

Newcastle:

Saint-Maximin 79

Southampton:

Red card Djenepo 28

Possession was Southampton 38% Newcastle 62%

Total shots were Southampton 6 Newcastle 14

Shots on target were Southampton 3 Newcastle 7

Corners were Southampton 5 Newcastle 8

Referee: Graham Scott

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Manquillo (Lazaro 72), Fernandez, Lascelles, Rose, Hayden (Sean Longstaff 79), Shelvey, Ritchie (Joelinton 61), Almiron, Allan Saint-Maximin, Gayle

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Schar, Yedlin, Bentaleb

Crowd: 30,096 (NUFC 3,000)

(Ralph Hasenhuttl says Newcastle United didn’t have any idea how to score against Southampton’s 10 men – Read HERE)

Southampton 0 Newcastle 1 – Watch official match highlights here including dramatic late ASM winner! – Watch HERE)

(Southampton 0 Newcastle 1 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Saturday’s incident packed win – Read HERE)

(Southampton 0 Newcastle 1 as Steve Bruce’s luck well and truly returns with VAR assisted victory – Read HERE)

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