Former Leeds and Middlesbrough striker Noel Whelan has cast doubt on Steve Bruce’s future as Newcastle manager in comments made to Football Insider.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Bruce admitted that he is “in the dark” over the prospective takeover at St James’ Park but insisted that he would “love to be part of it” if the proposed deal is successful.
However, Whelan believes that the would-be owners will already have big plans in place for the Tyneside club and that a decision will have already been made over the 59-year-old. He said of Bruce:
“He knows his job isn’t concrete, that’s what I think he knows. There are big plans for Newcastle, there’s a lot of exciting names being bandied about players who might come into the club.
“Who wouldn’t want to be the manager taking over a Gareth Bale or Edison Cavani, all these players being tipped to come in. Who wouldn’t think they wouldn’t do very well? I think I’d do very well as well and I’ve got no managerial experience! It’s like going into Harrods with a blank chequebook, it’s fantastic, you’d love it, you’d have great fun.
“I think he knows his job is under pressure, Pochettino’s one that seems to be the favourite and the thing is its kind of out of his hands. The thing is he’s got to finish the season as well as he can possibly can for his own sake because it’s his club that he supports.
“If it’s not going to be him, he’s going to walk away with his head held high. It’s out of his hands, the new owners will make that decision if not already made that decision. I think they will have already realised and made a decision on Steve Bruce’s future.”
It is perhaps fair to say that Bruce has guided the Magpies in a relatively decent season so far, as they sit rather comfortably in 13th place in the Premier League table on 35 points at the moment, eight points above the relegation zone with nine games left for them to play, as per BBC. They are also still in the FA Cup with a home match against Manchester City still left to play, assuming that competition does eventually resume.
In 35 games in all competitions this campaign, Bruce’s side have won 12, drawn 10 and lost 13, scoring 39 goals and conceding 52, according to Transfermarkt.
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However, despite his respectable return, Bruce may be asked to make way by the new owners and Whelan believes that his fate may have already been sealed. Granted, the Englishman is technically not their appointment, and so the Saud-led consortium may be looking for a fresh new face to take charge of the Toon in time for the next term – if their bid to take over from current owner Mike Ashley eventually goes through.
Geordies, how do you think Bruce has fared this season? Comment below with your views!
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