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Bruce Must Tread Lightly This Week With These Two Players


Steve Bruce will again have some tough decisions to make in his team selection for Thursday at Old Trafford. This is another crucial match and one we certainly should be looking to take all three points from.

Man United are only one place above us but only due to a much superior goal difference. Their loss today at Watford could spur them on at home on Boxing Day, but Newcastle should come in feeling very confident. Especially having defeated them at St James Park in October.

However, Bruce will again have injuries and tough selection decisions to contend with. Two of the biggest will be whether Bruce should risk Andy Carroll and Florian Lejeune after both played the full game against Crystal Palace.

The head coach will also have to look forward to Saturday’s match against Everton at St James Park just two days later. He’s likely going to have to rotate his squad but could possibly have a crisis with injured defenders.


We could be without Paul Dummett and Jetro Willems on Thursday as they both have suffered muscle injuries. That could give Bruce limited options defensively and on the left.

We will already be missing Jamaal Lascelles, Ciaran Clark, and Matt Ritchie, likely until the new year. However, we haven’t been given a prognosis yet on Dummett or Willems, so hopefully, they’ll be ok.

Dummett’s availability will play a significant role in whether Bruce decides to give Florian Lejeune his second start in just five days. He came through yesterday’s match brilliantly and has been training for months so he may be ok to play on Thursday.

Andy Carroll is another one that Bruce will have to make a decision on. He’ll likely not play in both the Manchester United and Everton matches. There’s no way Andy should be playing two games in three days.

It’ll be interesting to see if he goes with Andy on Thursday or holds him until the match at St James Park on Saturday. Either way, we’re likely to see Dwight Gayle get a start in one of those games.

This is a situation that all clubs have to manage at this time of year. However, it makes it that much harder when you have so many players struggling with injuries.

We also have Leicester City on New Year’s day and the Third Round of the FA Cup at Rochdale on January 4th.

Bruce is a very sensible man, and he’ll do what’s best for the long term. Hopefully, we have enough in this squad to keep the momentum going and continue to get points.

Newcastle is in a good position, but they need to keep focused on getting points. The bottom three are very much still alive, and a string of bad results could see us back in trouble.


58 comments so far

  • investinyouthtoon

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:03 PM

    Comment #1

    Repost. Catchy on prev post. Agree that Bruce deserves massive credit for the position we find ourselves in. Able to enjoy Christmas without looking at teams below thinking about relegation.

    Although just a word of caution, we as fans of nufc know only too well that disaster lurks only around the corner especially given that dumb and dumber are running the show. Sooner we reach 40 odd points the better. All we want is a team that tries, a team that commits 100% in all competitions it competes in.

    Things currently are definitely divide and conquer amongst the fans. Those wanting better for the club and doing all they can to force change. Whilst those who support the team are backing the team and some even knock the efforts of the protestors claiming they are fake or part time fans. Even though in my position i do 110% want change at nufc and will not return until ma has left, as with over 25 years being a season ticket holder I consciously could not sit on my hands and condone the running of the club in its current plight.

    7
  • Big Bruce Stars.

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:15 PM

    Comment #2

    That last post Posada was your official WUM stamp. You aren’t here to big up Bruce or do down Benitez. You’re here simply to divide and annoy the fans of this blog.

    I certainly won’t be trapped, shamed or ridiculed into giving Bruce “credit” because at the moment we are running on fumes, the players are working wonders with their own application and skill to grind out results against the odds. All Bruce is doing is his best to fill a team sheet beset by injuries and so far he’s uncannily rolled the dice in a good run. But stand back and see exactly what’s going on, realistically this is not a tactically led team, you cant convince anyone in their right mind there’s form or function behind it, matchdays are full of all sorts of groans and criticism about how we are playing, yes even from the most optimistic fans.

    We are just managing to win which is great but misleading in the long run unless Ashley jumps out of his body and does something completely out of character by getting the right players in the right positions in order to push the squad on.

    Rather than setting up bragging stations it would be better for all concerned (I include myself) not to assert they know the outcome of this season until we get to it, otherwise predictions of either relegation or cup wins might look extremely stupid.

    What I will say is that nothing has changed from the start of the season. We are all still looking at safety in the league as an accomplishment. Considering what we were fifteen years or so ago that is a huge lowering of expectations and standards, and even more so considering the potential resources Ashley denies this club.

    12
  • Jib

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:16 PM

    Comment #3

    Proper derby match this

    0
  • Big Bruce Stars.

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:25 PM

    Comment #4

    Bobbybee

    “Top half of the PL and some people still ain’t happy. I think that’s the difference between fans and customers though”

    Mythmaking or missing the point? Difficult to decide but perhaps a bit of both. I can’t see many at all being unhappy about the results. Relieved as well as happy maybe. But what’s the bitterness you are trying to tack into “people”? It’s not directed at the players. It’s not even directed at Bruce who is to be fair just an Ashley cheap pawn. It’s directed at the sham running of this club and the way it plays it’s fans against each other to distract from the harsh reality we are supporters of the subsisting money spinner of a greedy businessman with no designs on competing – a thing the club was set up for in the first place over a century ago.

    Don’t direct your “bitter” claims at other fans or call them less than fans, each to his own, you’re not the owner of that yardstick either.

    20
  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:29 PM

    Comment #5

    Spurs’ keeper lost his head there totally. Mourinho will be looking for a solid, reliable goalkeeper in one of the next two transfer windows. Strange how we’ve seen two absolute goalkeeping howlers today that have cost their team the game (assuming Spurs lose this today).

    Love seeing Tottenham lose though. Can’t stand Kane. Support him wearing an England shirt because I want to see the national team do well, but I think he’s a nasty, sly bloke.

    1
  • sing in the corner

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:32 PM

    Comment #6

    We are sitting pretty in the table and that’s great. Incredible points haul from our performances this season, defies belief actually.
    Can we please stop with this generalising myth that people who haven’t renewed season tickets want Newcastle to lose?
    It is complete nonsense.
    You can love Newcastle United,it can still be in your blood,and you can choose to miss out on home games.. at the moment.

    Posada
    You used to bleat on about ‘boycott’ theory setting fan against fan when folk were trying to discuss how best to push Ashley towards deciding to go.
    Now you are childishly goading people,in my opinion. They haven’t responded to it in kind,on the whole.

    22
  • jimiley

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:32 PM

    Comment #7

    Invest
    Yes its a funny old world.
    Fans who have gone to the ground for decades and supported for the last 10 desperate years but can no longer abide the destruction of the club are now described as “plastic” or “fairweather” by the halfwits.

    6
  • jimiley

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:34 PM

    Comment #8

    Ron Knee
    Tough to beat and tough to watch
    But it was tougher under Rafa. Why? Because we played exactly the same but got less wins.
    Rafa also had the massive advantage of forwards who scored goals. I wonder how he would have managed with Big Joe instead of Rondon and Almiron instead of Perez. They scored 25 league goals between them. Our whole forward line has 3 goals between them half way through the season.

    2
  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:38 PM

    Comment #9

    can anyone say its more thn luck?

    1
  • jimiley

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:40 PM

    Comment #10

    I would take Kane over Big Joe any day and get to like him. But I do not think he will come here.

    0
  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:42 PM

    Comment #11

    merry christmas everyone.

    1
  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:45 PM

    Comment #12

    jimiley – oh aye, if I could click my fingers and have Kane playing up front for us and banging them in, then yeah, I’d do it. I still wouldn’t like the bloke though 🙂

    0
  • toon22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:47 PM

    Comment #13

    Posada is just another alt of JIB

    😉

    3
  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:47 PM

    Comment #14

    Not sure Lejeune would want to see Kane at SJP though!

    0
  • ronaldo aarons

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:49 PM

    Comment #15

    Would Kane have made a difference yesterday? Or would he also be starved of service and look poor seeing as not one of our strikers had a chance to score yesterday?

    1
  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:50 PM

    Comment #16

    good craic toon 22

    0
  • ronaldo aarons

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:50 PM

    Comment #17

    Just an interesting stat I came across. No mischief making… honest. 😀

    Only Sir Alex Ferguson (5) and Rafael Benitez (3) have won more PL matches when trailing by 2+ goals at HT than Jose Mourinho (2).

    3
  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:52 PM

    Comment #18

    ronaldo
    shit manager equals shit team
    good manager equals good team

    0
  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:53 PM

    Comment #19

    Son can’t have any complaints on that red card. That was a deliberate kick out on Rudiger. Not sure why Lee Dixon would say that was a poor decision!

    2
  • ronaldo aarons

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:54 PM

    Comment #20

    You talk about rondon and Perez. I was a fan of both, especially Perez. Perez had many detractors so I was defending a lot to numerous posters. Both had their most productive seasons last year under Rafa. Don’t even think rondon got double figures in the premier league before and when his signing was announced, there was a big split in fans thinking he was good, poor or just a cheap option.

    Because ultimately they produced, why is that now being used to knock the manager that got them to produce in the first place lol.

    2
  • investinyouthtoon

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:54 PM

    Comment #21

    sing in the corner. Exactly mate. those fans who no longer go are less fans than those who still go and support the lads is total myth. Whatever their reasons for not renewing, those who support nufc love the club and will always want to see them do their best they can.

    In my case not renewing was horrible, deciding not to support the lads and spending time with friends and family I had spent over 20 years attending with was not easy. But my conscious would not allow me to put another penny in Ashleys pocket whilst he ran the club in its current manner. Ashley is the enemy not Bruce, he must be removed at any cost however this is unlikely as some fans are intent on nit picking and abusing those with opinions different to their own, shame on these so called fans.

    9
  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:56 PM

    Comment #22

    ronaldo – quality goalscorers need a least decent service to bang them in. Kane certainly wouldn’t get as many in a Toon shirt with our current team as he has done with Spurs so far.

    0
  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:57 PM

    Comment #23

    rondon was massively overated.

    2
  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 22, 2019 at 5:57 PM

    Comment #24

    Spurs supporters totally out of order throwing stuff at Kepa there. Not his fault that Son lost his head. Good job the camera just caught who threw that can. Looks like he’ll be watching the games on the telly from now on!

    3
  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:00 PM

    Comment #25

    Actually, I just rewound the DVR and whoever threw it was only just off the bottom of the screen when the can comes flying out of the crowd. He could be lucky.

    0
  • jane

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:00 PM

    Comment #26

    “some fans are intent on nit picking and abusing those with opinions different to their own”

    fans on both sides of the debate do it.

    “he must be removed at any cost”

    going to league 1 with an owner that has no money?

    0
  • sing in the corner

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:13 PM

    Comment #27

    It gets murky when people generalise. Come on man,45000 different people. Not renewing: x amount of thousands.

    Go to match = good
    Not going = bad

    Holes a mile wide in that.

    Since I got it bad, season 1977-8, I’ve gone with a ST, gone match by match, gone to some away games,had spells when I’ve not been. Believe you me I have stood / sat next to some die hard every-game attendees, great lads who have encyclopedic knowledge of the toon and undying love. I’ve also known people who have never missed games,irritating tools who spouted the most unadulterated pile of horseshat, and never understood a moment that has unfolded in front of them.
    Thousands of different people. All ‘fans’. Better or worse fans? plastic, fairweather,loyal Depends whose opinion.

    6
  • Mad Frog Boom 22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:14 PM

    Comment #28

    Takeover when? Who?

    0
  • toon22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:14 PM

    Comment #29

    Jane

    We might as well have no money now
    Profits are spent on tat shops
    Player sales vanish
    Were are held hostage while Jabba exploits us

    Id rather have a skint owner who wants to build a club than hope to scrape staying in the league every single season
    We wont have a squad that can compete ever with Jabba

    4
  • Mad Frog Boom 22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:14 PM

    Comment #30

    Ashley out now!

    0
  • Mad Frog Boom 22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:15 PM

    Comment #31

    #supporttoon22

    0
  • Big Bruce Stars.

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:15 PM

    Comment #32

    “now is the winter of our discontent”
    “Yellow matter custard dripping from a dead dogs’ eye”
    “Tide washes whiter than ever”

    Sorry Jane I’m doing my best with the random quotes game. – what’s the rules again?

    1
  • sing in the corner

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:16 PM

    Comment #33

    Nobody can say who is a better fan than the next one.
    How do you decide the criteria?

    2
  • Mad Frog Boom 22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:16 PM

    Comment #34

    Lady luck is on our side…how long? Relegation battle is real it s here and now!

    1
  • toon22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:17 PM

    Comment #35

    We have a club policy to not invest in youth
    To not compete in cups
    We have no interest in European football

    As a sporting enterprise we are a total non entity

    4
  • toon22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:18 PM

    Comment #36

    We are all Jabba has to advertise his tat shops

    Im happy to see JD absolutely wipe the floor with him and his tat

    5
  • sing in the corner

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:19 PM

    Comment #37

    I have to say,Chelsea have done a number on Spurs here. Total control. Kane looks very average.

    1
  • toon22

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:20 PM

    Comment #38

    Funny how the football served up is a similar kind of tat as his shops
    The club is now being run the same as just another Jabba tat shop

    5
  • jane

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:21 PM

    Comment #39

    all i said was not at any cost. if we have a new owner you would want a better one.

    you cannot tell me that Sunderland’s situation is better than ours.

    1
  • Ron Knee

    Dec 22, 2019 at 6:25 PM

    Comment #40

    Oh for a player of Willian’s quality.

    0

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