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Newcastle Starting To Fulfill Bruce’s Academy Vision

Longtime Newcastle goalkeeper Steve Harper has been named as a Newcastle first team coach this afternoon. He joins Steve Clemence and Steve Agnew as part of Steve Bruce’s staff – we sense a theme here.

Harper’s role will also see him serve as a link between the first team and the Academy staff. Steve recently left the Newcastle under-23 staff, where he served as a goalkeeping coach in May to concentrate on his role with the Northern Ireland national team.

He will remain with Northern Ireland as a goalkeeping coach when they compete in the Euro 2020 qualification playoffs in March.

This is what Harper had to say about his most recent adventure with Newcastle:

“I’m looking forward to it. The manager said to me he’d like me to come in with a role around the first team, but more than just that.

“I’ll officially be a first team coach, but with a conduit for keeping an eye on, and almost as a link to, the under-23s, who I worked with last season, and the Academy where I’ve worked in various capacities over the last three years.

“So it made sense, and I’m looking forward to getting started.”

When Neil Redfearn resigned as Newcastle’s under-23 manager earlier this month, it was reported that Steve Bruce wanted the link between the Academy and the first team to be closer.

Referenced in the reports was how Steve Bruce and assistant Steve Clemence worked at Hull City, where Clemence was the reserves manager. It appears that Newcastle are starting to put in steps to fulfill Bruce’s vision for the Academy with the hiring of Steve Harper.

This is what Bruce had to say about Harper’s new role with Newcastle:

“Since I came through the door, I have had a big interest in what our Academy is producing. With the difficulty of being on two sites, I think it’s vitally important that we have a link between the two and certainly, Steve Harper will give us a better link.

“He’s somebody who I had the pleasure of managing, he’s went on to do his coaching badges, and he’s one of that ‘young brigade’ who can do a little bit of coaching, but just as importantly, will give us a stronger bridge in between the first team and the Academy.”

It appears to us that Steve Bruce is getting more say in the future direction of Newcastle. His vision for a stronger link between the first team and the Academy could be a vital first step in Newcastle bringing through more youngsters at the club.

There is also talk that Bruce is pushing for the January signing of Hull City’s Jarrod Bowen. If Bruce can get Newcastle to cough up between £15-20m for exciting forward, that would be an even bigger indication that the club has faith in Bruce.

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12 comments so far

  • RobLeenio

    Nov 22, 2019 at 4:56 PM

    Comment #1


    Nov 8, 2019 at 5:05 PM

    Comment #5
    Talking of ‘new’ coaches for the U23s, Steve Harper was at Whitley Park for the U23 game this afternoon, according to NUFC.com.

    He was the Academy goalkeeping coach until May this year and left on good terms, looking for a bigger role in the game. U23 Head Coach would be a promotion that he might well appreciate.
    Called it!


  • RobLeenio

    Nov 22, 2019 at 4:57 PM

    Comment #2

    Well, not quite, but kinda….


  • hibbit

    Nov 22, 2019 at 5:04 PM

    Comment #3

    Bruce’s Academy Vision,
    not so sure about that, seem to remember the guy who had the job before Bruce was the one that was pushing for improvement in/with the academy ??

  • cyprus

    Nov 22, 2019 at 5:11 PM

    Comment #4

    So Robbie has us for a 1-1 draw. Safe bet. He also has Bournemouth and Watford drawing in their games. I’ve gone for that.

    Some of his predictions are a bit risque. Chelsea, West Ham wins. Sheffield draw vs Man u.

    I’d say, Chelsea to lose 2-0. West Ham, draw vs Mourinho. Man u, win.

    Newcastle? 1, x, 2, as per usual.

  • RobLeenio

    Nov 22, 2019 at 5:15 PM

    Comment #5

    hibbit, fair point, but we also need to recognise the input of Ben Dawson here – it’s his academy after all.

    I think he, Rafa and now Bruce are pushing for improvements to be made, which is only good for the club long-term, no matter who the owner is or will be.

  • Oldgit1

    Nov 22, 2019 at 5:19 PM

    Comment #6

    Is it possible that Steve harper is taking over Ben Dawson’s role, with him going back to the under 23 as a head coach?

  • RobLeenio

    Nov 22, 2019 at 5:20 PM

    Comment #7

    It’s an interesting role, isn’t it, if you read what Bruce says above. I imagine he’ll be involved with coaching the kids as well as the first team, so that when (if) they make the step up to the first team they see a friendly face in the dressing room and out on the training pitch.

    It’s actually a really pivotal position in the development of our lads. Best of luck to him, I think he’ll be ideal – he’s always come across as a really good bloke as well as a fine player.

  • Ron Knee

    Nov 22, 2019 at 5:22 PM

    Comment #8

    Lee Ryder@lee_ryder

    Steve Bruce and Steve Harper start work straight away as #nufc U23s take on Benfica tonight. Both will be in the stands

  • hibbit

    Nov 22, 2019 at 5:24 PM

    Comment #9


    I like Ben Dawson and think he does a decent job , but i firmly believe that like the rest of the of the footballing side of the club he has to work with one hand tied behind his back most of the time

  • IrishRob

    Nov 22, 2019 at 5:42 PM

    Comment #10

    @2:57, That’s me Rob, Lol I am offensive. You look at my wording of things instead of looking at the fact there is paedophiles in the Royal family absolutely RUINING kids lives for decades, and you and others direct the vitriol at me. CLASSIC example of what people on here are like. SMFH!!

  • bettyswallocks

    Nov 22, 2019 at 6:11 PM

    Comment #11

    Thank Gawd we have PL footy back this weekend. I love a bit of diversity but some of the Shyte posted this week is beyond me.

  • Jib

    Nov 22, 2019 at 6:14 PM

    Comment #12

    This could end up a nightmare couple of months for
    Jamaal Lascelles. Not only is he going to be supplanted
    by a CB (Lejeune) regarded by many as his superior but
    there will be a double whammy in that a new captain will
    have to be appointed.
    If his replacement as captain makes a fist of it , then forcing
    his way back into the side could prove very difficult.


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