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Newcastle make their best start since the Championship, but Bruce still gets no respect

Posted on December 8th, 2020 | 7 Comments |

Steve Bruce
Bruce: No respect at all.
He’s the Rodney Dangerfield of football, Rodney Dangerfield being the famous American comedian whose catchphrase was ‘I get no respect, no respect at all!’ But meanwhile, despite all the moaning, considering the resources at his disposal, Newcastle are actually doing as well as can be expected, at the least, they certainly aren’t doing badly.

In their first ten games, Newcastle have won 14 points with a 40% win percentage, not the greatest until you consider that in 2019/20 they’d only won 3 points, and before that, Benitez only won 3 too, though he equalled Bruce’s first ten game total in our first season after promotion. Bruce and Benitez have had similar league finishes, both have played a similar style, counterattacking football with a big target man up front which isn’t the most exciting to watch, and yet one was almost worshipped and the other is treated with disdain, but why?

As Joelinton said in an interview: “When he [Bruce] arrived, he came under a lot of pressure, part of the crowd didn’t want him because of his old work.”

The main criticism levelled at Bruce is that he plays old fashioned ‘defensive’ football, ceding possession to the opposition for most of the game and hoping for a good opportunity to hit teams on the break. This has been true on many occaisions, but that was also true of Benitez. For a Spanish manager, Benitez has always had a rather ‘English’ approach to the game. I remember going several times to watch his giant killing Valencia side at the Mestalla in the early noughties. Back then he had a very big Norwegian target man called John Carew, who later played for Aston Villa.

As well as this, Bruce has taken the Magpies to the quarter finals of a Cup competition for the second time in a row, last season the FA Cup and this time the League Cup. This time they would like their chances of going even further this season if they beat Brentford in the League Cup Quarter Final. The best Benitez managed was the fourth round of the Cup. Newcastle have had a problem with scoring enough goals for a long while now, Bruce’s side have only averaged a goal per game in the Premier League, but Benitez was barely better with 1.1. They have a almost identical Premier League win percentage too with Bruce’s 31.3% vs Benitez with 31.4%.

The results are all but identical, the style of football is similar, so why is there such a huge difference in perception with fans? Of course, it is because Steve Bruce hasn’t won the the Champions League, nor has he managed Real Madrid, though both of those would be a shock, admittedly. One team Bruce has managed is Sunderland, which hasn’t helped either. Whatever it is though, the evidence suggests that it isn’t really about the football.

NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1083 articles on this blog.

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7 Responses

  1. A poorly outlined reason as to why neither the fans or anyone I know would agree with, but then you always praised that well known defender Williamson, who was for the most part slow, couldn’t defend and someone who was for the most part useless.
    As for praising both our Brazilian center forward and Bruce, one who directs play, the other who so far has scored three goals, just doesn’t make sens
    At least Benitez brought in a goalscoring Center forward, Rondon, that was then told to get lost, who did well in China under Benitez .
    And to compare the two, obviously one is a European Champions League winner who has a good track record with
    someone who has little to recommend him and plays a purely defensive game, and lucked out be acquiring a few free transfers but really has little idea about tactics, nothing more boring than watching any Nufc game.
    And yes a number of clubs started gaining points early, as did we, but when they come up against decent sides it’s obvious their job is to avoid relegation at any cost, well that is as long as it doesn’t cost Ashley anything.
    I guess Bruce is the last of the English and Scottish re-treads
    as I hear BSA made himself unavailable and who can blame him.
    If things don’t change (getting both a decent manager and spending a few bucks) we are about to go the way of a number of sides, Sunderland and Boro.included, who have spent more time outside the top league , but I have an idea Ashley needs the money for investment in his real business
    The Rag Trade and only by selling the club will we become a side who can compete and let others vie for the security of the EPl.
    After all fifty thousand spectators combined with the riches of the EPL, should be enough to keep us both in the EPL and to introduce a decent standard of football, not the garbage witnessed by to-days fans, who I project will begin to drop in numbers, I mean who wants to watch this defensive rubbish,
    ,A game that begins with the premise that we have to defend and according to Worky either score from break aways or set pieces, not me ! though it sounds a bit like a BSA type game.
    And attempts to blame Rafa for introducing it, listen anyone who compares Bruce, with Rafa, and who thought Williamson was a decent defender, obviously needs to get out more.

  2. Chuck, Mike Williamson might just cross the water and be manager of Newcastle United one day, I bet that you make you chunter!

    Where did I praise Joelinton? Whilst we’re on that subject though, whilst he has definitely been a disappointment, that one performance against Crystal Palace was excellent by any standard, not just because he scored a goal and provided an assist.

    I would rather have Bruce than ‘Big Sam,’ I even think that most of Bruce’s stern critics would agree with me there!

    Rondon’s knocked in a few goals in a lower standard league but Benitez is having quite a rough time in China. In 2020 they came 12th, out of 16.

    On another former manager, Chris Hughton is struggling to kickstart Forest. He lost a few, then he seemed to stabilise things and get some wins, now they’ve gone back to losing and drawing.

  3. Worky, you fail to realize that respect is earned not given for no reason, face it the man (Bruce) is being paid well but has yet to gain the fans respect, As a matter of fact I don’t ever recall him being especially liked by the fans, local boy or not !

  4. Chuck, I think that’s wholly true, I don’t think that reality always fits into cliches like that. With the exception of Benitez, the Newcastle United manager’s position is one of the lowest paid in the Premier League.

  5. Sure ! we are all aware of the problem @nufc, it’s simply that the owner is a control freak who makes most of the decisions , unfortunately being he obviously knows little about the game, though even if he did things would undoubtably remain the same, being he takes a sizable chunk for himself.
    Yes the club were in a financial bind prior to his taking over, but he hasn’t actually done anything to resolve that situation, attempting other than bringing in players when threatened by relegation, though he hopefully understands we are the new WBA, about to join many of he old first division sides as an elevator club, existing between the Premiership and the second tier.
    As for managers, face it no self respecting manager wants to take over, knowing he will be payed less and restricted to whatever he
    does at the training ground and we have just about run out of people who want the job, other than the UK retreads desperate for any kinda job. of which local boy Bruce is the latest and hopefully the last .

  6. So, another game and another win as the Magpies rise up the table despite missing a game. But will it stop chuntering Chuck? Never! It was a lovely header from Gayle. They’re always better when they bang off the crossbar on their way in. Gayle’s another Rodney Dangerfield, he gets no respect neither, not at Newcastle anyway.

    That’s 14 games in all competitions for Steve Bruce this season with 7 wins, a 50% win ratio with a 45.5% win ratio in the Premier League. Considering what he has to work with, the Magpies are soaring, and we also have a game in hand over most teams now.

  7. Yeah sure ! while we play the bottom sides and it looks easier to survive this
    season regardless of the Pandemic, it appears our host Worky is willing to settle for a know nowt manager and success against what appears to be three of the worst teams to achieve success from the second tier.
    I believe that squeezing the latter part of the champions league, by using a competition between the remaining four sides in order to earn some extra money is “all wrong” being the top three sides should be allowed to be promoted.
    If anyone thinks we are going anywhere in the PL, perhaps they aught to look at the upcoming schedule following Christmas. it may change their mind .
    Face it we are no better than any of the
    bottom ten sides, all due to having an owner who refuses to spend for any kind success, never will be.
    Face it the real problem is money, which having an owner who uses the club as a extra money earner, at the same time wasting it on on failures, like our three goal scoring center forward, for a meager forty odd grand.
    The club is in a perilous state, our dear owner’s fault and unless we can get rid of him and his lousy managers the club will be in limbo awaiting a rebirth.
    Never mind the fact we are around thirteenth place and according to Worky. what is it again, “pushing our way up the league”, yeah right !

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