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Steve Bruce says his ‘brave’ decisions have finally paid off at Newcastle United

6 months ago
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Steve Bruce watched on as Newcastle United recorded their first win in twelve games.

Two second half goals from Callum Wilson taking all three points at Goodison Park.

Those two goals equalling the number scored by NUFC in the previous fourteen hours of football.

It was inevitable that many people would connect the improved performance and result with the arrival of Graeme Jones in midweek.

However, Steve Bruce was keen after the game to claim that the win over Everton was the result of longer-term work.

The NUFC Head Coach declaring: ‘That was more like it…getting after the ball better and getting it back higher up’, Bruce insisting that playing further up the pitch: ‘is something we have been working on for weeks.’

Newcastle did play better and to an extent played higher up the pitch, however it was still the home side who dominated possession (61%) and NUFC scored with two of their three efforts on target, whilst Everton failed with theirs, Karl Darlow making a couple of decent saves.

United were competitive though and that’s a starting point, we know we have a striker in Callum Wilson who is capable of taking chances if Newcastle create any…Wilson having more decent chances coming his way at Everton than he probably has had in the previous ten games combined.

Getting the better more mobile players further up the pitch, such as Almiron, is a no brainer. Thankfully Steve Bruce finally not simply playing the Paraguayan as an extra defender, whilst keeping the likes of Andy Carroll and Joelinton off the pitch should be also patently obvious.

To convince anybody that anything has changed, Steve Bruce and the players must now put at least some kind of a run together where as well as picking up points, they create a decent number of chances and start controlling games a lot more.

Here’s hoping.

Steve Bruce:

“There is no disputing it, it has been very difficult.

“When you are on a bad run in the Premier League it’s difficult whether you’re Mikel Arteta or Frank Lampard.

“You have to be brave and make these decisions.

“We are trying to be more on the front foot and push up the pitch.

“That is something we want to do more, we are a lot better.

“The players have enjoyed the change, certainly by looking at that performance today.

“What you need is a result to go with it, so today of course everybody is happy.

“That was more like it…getting after the ball better and getting it back higher up.

“We look far better in terms of personnel available, we’ve been struggling big style. We’ve had an awful eight weeks with injury and illness.

“[Playing further up the pitch] is something we have been working on for weeks.

“If you looked at Newcastle in the past year it was sitting deep and hitting on the counter attack.

“I haven’t turned it around now, just on one performance.

“I hope in time if we stay fit and healthy we will be OK.”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Everton 0 Newcastle 2 – Saturday 30 January 12.30pm

Goals:

Newcastle:

Wilson 73 and 90+3

Everton:

Possession was Everton 61% Newcastle 39%

Total shots were Everton 11 Newcastle 13

Shots on target were Everton 3 Newcastle 3

Corners were Everton 7 Newcastle 12

Referee: Stuart Attwell

Newcastle United:

Darlow, Manquillo, Lascelles (Clark 54), Hayden, Schar, Lewis, Hendrick, Shelvey, Almiron, Wilson, Fraser (Saint-Maximin 67)

Unused Subs:

Dubravka, M Longstaff, Carroll, Joelinton, Gayle, Anderson, Krafth

Crowd: 00,000

(Graeme Jones records first win after taking over – Everton 0 Newcastle 2 – Read HERE)

(Brilliant victory, can’t believe it – Everton 0 Newcastle 2 match report – Read HERE)

(Everton 0 Newcastle 2 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Saturday’s win – Read HERE)

(Everton 0 Newcastle 2 – Watch both excellent NUFC goals in these official match highlights – Watch HERE)

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