Extraordinary claim from Steve Bruce media friend as ‘clock ticking’ on whether/when to sack him
As we all know, Steve Bruce is not without friends.
Not many amongst the Newcastle United fanbase of course, especially after these 27 months of having to put up with his poor management ability and embarrassing press conferences.
No, instead it is the media and wider English football community where you cannot move for members of the Steve Bruce fan club, his 40+ years in English football meaning countless friends will swear blind he has / is doing a great job at Newcastle United, no matter what the reality actually is.
Amongst the classics in recent days, have been Danny Murphy insisting that it hasn’t been a bad start to the season (Real Life check – eight games played and no wins despite generous opening fixtures, out of the League Cup and second bottom of the Premier League).
Whilst Jim White ridiculed the idea of somebody like ‘Lucien Favre’ coming i, making clear that he believes everybody would think it ludicrous that Favre could do a better job than Steve Bruce (Real Life check – I’m not saying Favre ideal for
Newcastle United but Steve Bruce (in his entire managerial career 0 trophies won and zero top 9 Premier League finishes) v Lucien Favre (won trophies in Switzerland and Germany, plus top four finishes in Germany with Hertha Berlin and Borussia Monchengladbach, finished top three in France with Nice, whilst at Dortmund finished as runners up only two points behind Bayern).
Anyway, as we wait to see when / if Steve Bruce will be sacked before Sunday’s game against Tottenham, Bruce’s friend and top newspaper journalist ally has also gone into bat for his mate.
Luke Edwards of The Telegraph giving this updated overview of the situation:
‘It is encouraging, though, that the new regime is treating Bruce with the respect and dignity he deserves. He has battled against supporter and local media animosity for most of his two seasons in charge but has a wealth of experience that can be tapped into.
Telegraph Sport had learned the two most prominent public members of the consortium, Amanda Staveley and her husband Mehrdad Ghodoussi, have stressed how grateful they were for the fact he kept Newcastle up two years without any major investment in the squad under former owner Mike Ashley.
Rather than merely hand Bruce his P45 and ask him to clear out his office it seems they genuinely wanted to talk to him about the club and their plans. The meeting lasted more than an hour.’
Luke Edwards mentioning there, Monday’s visit to the training ground by new owners (Amanda Staveley and Mehrdad Ghodoussi) when they talked to Steve Bruce for around an hour.
Even Edwards thinks it is all but inevitable that his mate will get the boot BUT before he does, he clearly wants to get as much propaganda out there as possible, to defend / prop up Steve Bruce.
For the man from The Telegraph to claim Steve Bruce ‘kept Newcastle up two years without any major investment in the squad under former owner Mike Ashley’…well, it takes some brass neck.
Rafa Benitez in his three years was allowed not a penny in net spend on transfers, whereas in Steve Bruce’s 27 months, Mike Ashley allowed him a very sizeable £125m net spend, indeed, when Bruce made clear he wasn’t happy about now having more backing in the latest transfer window apart from the £25m net spend allowed on Joe Willock, a furious Ashley released a public statement that was quite clearly aimed at his head coach, saying that in total £160m had been committed to recruiting players since Steve Bruce arrived in July 2019.
When it comes to net spending allowed on players, Rafa Benitez was relegation zone level in his three years, whilst for Steve Bruce it has been top ten level when it comes to net spending compared to the rest of the Premier League clubs. Obviously not ‘major investment’ kind of levels that Newcastle fans are hoping to see in the years / transfer windows ahead BUT certainly claiming has had to cope ‘without any major investment’ is laughable.
The fact is as well, even though Steve Bruce has been backed with 14 signings (both permanent and loan) since he arrived, when Newcastle lost to Wolves in their last Premier League game, only three Bruce signings were on the pitch, whilst five others he’d signed were on the bench. Despite allowed the sizeable investment in the squad, Steve Bruce still largely relying on players Rafa Benitez brought in on a tight budget, indeed many of the starters having played in the promotion side five years ago.
Luke Edwards also revealing that ‘Staff at the training ground were surprised that Bruce returned to take training again on Tuesday morning alongside assistant coach Graeme Jones…’
Though the man from The Telegraph also quotes ‘sources connected to the new owners‘ that are saying they are very confident that Steve Bruce will be gone in advance of Sunday’s match.
Edwards add that ‘with a game to prepare for, the clock is ticking and a final decision is needed in order for the team to prepare properly to face Spurs.’
In conclusion, I still think Steve Bruce will definitely not be there on Sunday, even his Telegraph mate points to the potential very negative impact his presence could have on the atmosphere and feel good vibe.
It has been reported that the players are training today (Wednesday) but then will have a day off on Thursday, so I think later today or Thursday morning look the right time(s) to expect an official announcement that he has gone.
Elsewhere, it has also been reported that extra media stuff had been arranged for early this week, to do interviews etc with Steve Bruce ahead of what would (have been!) be his one thousandth game as a manager. However, that media stuff cancelled apparently.
If by some set of circumstances Steve Bruce did survive beyond Thursday, then very difficult to see him then be sacked before Tottenham, as on Friday there will be the pre-match press conference and of course most importantly getting into the last day but one of training ground preparation for this very important first match of the new ownership era.
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