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On today’s video, we take a look at Newcastle under Steve Bruce - are they as boring as everyone makes out, and why are they struggling so much in the Premier League?
When Steve Bruce was appointed Newcastle manager in 2019, he was handed the task of succeeding Rafael Benitez, the club’s most popular manager since the days of Kevin Keegan and Sir Bobby Robson. It also sent a pretty clear message to Magpies fans, as the club went from having a Champions League-winner in the dugout, to a manager whose 20-year CV consists of getting clubs into the Premier League, trying to keep them there, and not a lot else.
On arrival at St James’ Park, Bruce said his new team would “play on the front foot”, and with the club buying Joelinton and Allan Saint-Maximin for a combined £55.8million, it was tempting to believe him. But despite leading the side to a 13th-place finish, the same as Rafa Benitez had managed with a similar points total the season before, as well as sustaining a run to the FA Cup quarter-finals, the club’s best showing since 2006, his first season was far from inspiring.
They scored just 38 goals, their worst tally in the Prem since 1998, while Jonjo Shelvey was their top scorer in the league with 6, indicative of a team which had worryingly few ideas in the final third. A year later, and little progress has been made, with the side lost without the injured Callum Wilson, and with supporters clamouring ever louder for Bruce’s sacking as the club looks in increasing danger of a second relegation in six years.
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13 mrt. 2021