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Opinion

A question of loyalty emerges at Newcastle United

4 months ago
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So now we have it. Through his mouthpiece of Sky Sports, Mike Ashley has revealed that he will retain Steve Bruce because of his loyalty, meaning that the welfare of the club is of a lesser consideration.

One wonders just how that loyalty was manifest.

I did not hear of any offers to Mr Bruce coming from the likes of Chelsea or PSG, so just what could it have been?

Might it have been a certain Brazilian, a new variant of a footballer, one that cannot hold possession, cannot shoot, is a feeble header of the ball and hardly fleet of foot? His only Premier League goal of the season that I recall [at Palace], was a scuffed deflected effort.

He did score with a long range shot against Morecambe in the Carabao Cup but they fielded a player in semi retirement to solve a goalkeeping crisis and the real quality of that goal is uncertain. He also scored one against Rochdale last season but otherwise has shown little to suggest he would thrive in League One or below.

Which brings us to Rafa Benitez, Salomon Rondon and Mike Ashley.

It seemed that there was a continual conflict between the aspirations of Benitez and the loosening of Ashley’s purse strings and control, which came to a head over the issue of permanently signing Rondon and / or Joelinton.

Benitez and Rondon left. Joelinton arrived.

Mike Ashley seemed to think he could show that he was prepared to spend big, that he did not need Benitez grasping, and would prove that he could do it his way, by buying a big priced centre forward. Unfortunately, he was badly let down by his scouting team (and ignored Benitez’ opinion on Joelinton).

So how could Mike Ashley be rescued from appearing a total fool?

By giving his big investment every chance to come good and appearing to be truly worth the money by being a virtual ever present in the Premier League (Joelinton has played in 61 of the 67 PL NUFC matches since he arrived in July 2019).

Which brings us to Steve Bruce and the matter of loyalty.

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