Newcastle United

Newcastle United

Premier League • England

Steve Bruce fires back with claim Newcastle fans will soon realise they were wrong

Steve Bruce Gary Neville laughing September 2021

New West Brom manager Steve Bruce was keen to close the book on his tumultuous Newcastle reign, though couldn’t resist firing back with one parting shot.

Bruce succeeded Valerien Ismael at the Hawthorns on Thursday. West Brom currently sit sixth in the Championship table, though their pre-season expectations were geared towards automatic promotion.

The 61-year-old Bruce has been drafted in to guide them back to the promised land. And if successful, and if Newcastle also avoid relegation, Bruce could return to St. James’ Park next season in the opposing dugout.

Bruce’s time in the north east was categorised by widespread discontent among the fans. His style of football was savaged, though he did succeed in avoiding relegation with 13th and 12th-placed finishes respectively.

And despite being the focal point of fans’ anger throughout his two-year term, Bruce feels his reign at St James’ Park will stand the test of time.

Criticism of Steve Bruce reign misguided?

Via the PA, Bruce said: “Newcastle has gone, it was a chapter of my football life. I want them to succeed. It was a difficult time for me but maybe in a few years people will think finishing 12th and 13th wasn’t that bad after all.

“That chapter has now left me, I want to look forward to taking West Brom forward and I’m very confident I can do that.

“You reflect on it, it was there, you look at it and you want it (the criticism) to go away. The only way you can do it though is to get back on the horse and not take the criticism too far.

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“That was the real thing, to put it behind me, it’s gone and move forward.

“My job was to keep them in the Premier League and nothing has changed. I wish them the best of luck.”

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Meanwhile, A host of clubs from around Europe are showing an interest in signing Newcastle midfielder Isaac Hayden, TEAMtalk understands.

Hayden has suffered an injury-plagued campaign, but the 26-year-old was surprisingly left out of Newcastle’s final 25-man squad for the second half of the Premier League season.

Now Hayden is left with the option of staying in England and not playing, or moving to Europe to see action.

Most of the major leagues’ windows are closed. However, there are some big teams who are ready to offer Hayden a lifeline.

Sparta Prague and Basel are both keen, whilst a number of Russian top-flight clubs are interested. They include Spartak Moscow, Lokomotiv Moscow and Sochi.

Turkish clubs are also keen, including struggling Galatasaray – indeed Turkey could also be the landing spot for Hayden’s team-mate Jamal Lewis, who has also been left out of the squad.

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