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This Steve Bruce statement makes absolutely zero sense after Brighton 0 Newcastle 0

3 weeks ago
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Steve Bruce often leaves me puzzled with what he says before and after matches.

The aftermath of this excuse for a football match at Brighton a prime example.

What is difficult to understand / accept is why the media never pick up on certain claims / comments.

In making it only four wins in their last 19 Premier League games now, Newcastle only had one effort on target in the entire match, including zero in the second half.

Yet Steve Bruce declared afterwards; ‘I thought if anyone was going to win it in the second half it was us.’

A tactic Bruce has repeatedly used this season to cover up so many dreadful negative displays, is to focus on the one or two (if we are lucky) chances NUFC have had and say ‘if only’ such and such had scored…

Steve Bruce basing his Newcastle more likely to win after the break on: ‘When you see Andy Carroll head and shoulders above their defenders you think it’s a classic Andy goal’, referring to a deep cross that Carroll put wide.

Not sure what a ‘classic Andy goal’ is, considering it is 28 months now since he last scored in the Premier League.

However, it is actually this Steve Bruce statement which makes absolutely zero sense after Brighton 0 Newcastle 0: ‘However it was important that we put a point on the board.’

Why?

You could say that about Brighton because a point made them mathematically safe but Newcastle? Would a single NUFC honestly have been bothered if the scoreline had been 1-0 rather than 0-0. If Newcastle were now 13th with 43 points instead of 13th with 44 points?

Many Newcastle fans have interpreted the head coach’s team selections, especially playing the same 11 in the PL against Sheffield United and Villa then a weakened team in the FA Cup quarter-final, risking players who have been injured, risking overplaying players with knocks such as ASM, as a simple desperation to try and get more points than Rafa Benitez. Steve Bruce’s mates in the media have claimed that is nonsense.

However, how do you then explain the team selections, risk taking with players and claiming a point at Brighton was so important?

At one point in match commentary to try and help excuse how bad the match was, the commentators were blaming it partly on these type of late games in the season seeing managers trying various things to help prepare for next season.

Steve Bruce says he and Mike Ashley are doing everything they can to persuade 20 year old Matty Longstaff to stay, yet once again Bruce didn’t give him a single minute, only using three subs in total.

Likewise, 20 year old centre-back Kell Watts travelled and didn’t get on the pitch, Steve Bruce instead using full-backs at centre-back. If you don’t give young players a chance in these type of games, when will you do?

The same with 20 year old Thomas Allan and 19 year old Jack Young, both of them on the bench recently and yet not a minute on the pitch, despite being able to use five subs.

In tonight’s Newcastle team, five players were 29 or older and four of those in their thirties. ASM the only starter who was aged under 25.

Where is the planning for next season / the future? If you won’t give young players a chance in meaningless end of season games, when will you?

I would much rather Newcastle had tried to make a decent game of it against Brighton, try to attack, give some young players a chance. I’d rather do that and get beat 3-2 or whatever than that rubbish goalless draw we all had to endure.

Steve Bruce:

“The one thing you can’t deny about this group is their ability to roll their sleeves up and have a go.

“We played two full backs as centre backs today and I was delighted with their application and attitude.

“I thought if anyone was going to win it in the second half it was us.

“When you see Andy Carroll head and shoulders above their defenders you think it’s a classic Andy goal.

“He’s disappointed because it had goal written all over it but it wasn’t to be.

“Emil Krafth has a really sore ankle.

“He’s done well to carry on. He epitomised the spirit of all of them today.

“It wasn’t a classic, don’t get me wrong.

“However it was important that we put a point on the board.

“Fair play to everyone that worked tirelessly to get the games on and get the season finished.

“However it’s been a long, long year and we’ll have played ten games in 35 days which is a huge ask.

“We haven’t got the ability to rotate so all in all the players have done well.”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Brighton 0 Newcastle 0 – Monday 20 July 6pm

Goals:

Newcastle United:

Brighton:

(Half-time stats in brackets)

Possession was Brighton 62% (69%) Newcastle 38% (31%)

Total shots were Brighton 11 (7) Newcastle 11 (5)

Shots on target were Brighton 3 (2) Newcastle 1 (1)

Corners were Brighton 9 (5) Newcastle 7 (2)

Referee: Simon Hooper

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Manquillo, Krafth, Fernandez, Rose, Shelvey, Bentaleb, Almiron (Lazaro 86), Ritchie, Gayle (Carroll), Saint-Maximin (Joelinton 74)

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Muto, Atsu, Yedlin, M Longstaff, Watts

Crowd: 00,000

(Brighton 0 Newcastle 0 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Monday’s dire goalless draw – Read HERE)

(3 Positives and 3 Negatives from Brighton 0 Newcastle 0 – Read HERE)

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