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Bruce All But Confirms 25-Year-Old Is Undroppable

There were hints that Javier Manquillo had more to offer than previously shown towards the end of last season. Rafa Benitez gave the 25-year-old a run of four games in April and May in place of DeAndre Yedlin.

Manquillo played very well in the right wing-back role. He carried that form through pre-season and looked like he would be first-choice for the coming campaign.

However, that lasted all of one week as he was dropped for new signing Emil Krafth in our second match at Norwich City. Javier came back against Brighton but didn’t play too well, however, it was a dismal team performance that no Magpie particularly shined in.

That seemed like it for Manquillo. He was out of the matchday squad for the next six matches. With his contract running out at the end of the season, it seemed like the curtains were being drawn on Javier’s Newcastle career.

However, the Spaniard had other plans. When DeAndre Yedlin went down with a hip injury after the Aston Villa loss, Bruce surprised everyone when he opted to bring in Manquillo over Emil Krafth, who seemed to be second choice.

Manquillo didn’t let this opportunity pass him by and has been one of our best players over the past five games. Steve Bruce has been delighted with his wing-back singling him out as his Man of the Match against Crystal Palace.

Bruce’s praise has not stopped there. The Chronicle have published the following comments from the head coach on the in-form Spaniard:

“It’s what you want. The most important thing when you come in is to try and evaluate what you’ve got in front of you.

“I thought he was unfortunate to come out of the team when I look at it. Again, it’s that competition. I’m delighted for him. He played really well. He was exceptional against Zaha.

“He did really well against Raheem Sterling a couple of weeks ago. Very quietly, pleasantly, he’s surprised me.

“I’m delighted for him. If he comes in and plays well, he deserves to stay in there. Emil’s been scratching his head, thinking ‘what’s happened’, and DeAndre not being fit has opened the door for Manquillo. He’s done very well.”

Manquillo’s form has been hard lines for Emil Krafth who has struggled so far in the Premier League. However, Bruce has to continue with the player who has been in scintillating form over the past month.

Yedlin came in against Manchester United in October after recovering from his groin injury and was outstanding up until the Aston Villa loss. It is a bit harsh on the American; however, his defensive liabilities will always be a problem, and Manquillo has been outstanding when up against some top wingers.

Long may it continue for Javier who is a model professional. Hopefully, he’s proven himself worthy of a new deal at Newcastle.

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11 comments so far

  • ronaldo aarons

    Dec 24, 2019 at 12:56 PM

    Comment #1

    Hail Toon22 😉

  • Zele

    Dec 24, 2019 at 12:57 PM

    Comment #2


    I agree Bruce deserves a lot of credit for getting us to where we are now given the less than favourable circumstances he was faced with when he arrived.

    I have to admit that I never warmed to Benetez. I acknowledged his tactical ability to setup a team not to lose (but also not to win). But there was something cold and stand offish about him which surprised me as to why so many fans liked him. He just didn’t have the endearing character that Sir Bobby and Keegan had.

    It’s interesting what Almiron said recently about the differences between Benetez and Bruce. He said that Bruce talks to the players on a very personal level whereas Benetez never did which very much reflects what Steven Gerrard said about him at Liverpool.

    On the surface Bruce appears to have a very good relationship with the players. Hope it continues.

  • ronaldo aarons

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:00 PM

    Comment #3

    That’s what competition does I guess for players, pushes each other, nobody guaranteed a spot and only your performances justifying your selection. An injury or poor performance opens the door for another.

    Still feels like manquillo has been around for ages, playing in Spain and this country with the dirty ones down the road and the dirty ones on Merseyside. Being 25 now hopefully a lot of his errors and inconsistencies have been ironed out somewhat and he’s coming into his prime. Hopefully.

  • Lindisfarne

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:07 PM

    Comment #4

    “Emil! Get your hands out your pockets”

  • Zele

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:07 PM

    Comment #5


    I think he has just come of age.

    Now an experienced pro in his prime but with many years ahead of him.

  • Scythe For Bruce

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:12 PM

    Comment #6

    lesh – you pretty much summed up why I can’t be bothered with the blog much these days. Same people arguing all day, every day. Same people claiming to be older and wiser yet they resort to childish name calling like bairns. You even get the very same people who name call telling others not to name call! Pure hypocrisy.

    I might pop in now and again to try and pick out some actual football talk, but it’s few and far between. I appreciate Ed, Neil and the Wife taking more of a hands on approach these days and handing out bans when necessary, but there’s only so much you can do. It’s like being in charge of a classroom of out of control kids. It’s overwhelming and there’s only so much you can do.

    I’d be wasting my breath saying that certain posters should take a step back and take a look at how they’re behaving and interacting on here, but the very people I’m talking about don’t even recognize that they’re the ones causing the problems. It’s always ‘someone else’ who’s the problem. Sad state of affairs. It’s not even just this blog but just society in general. It’s just the way things are these days it seems.

  • Lindisfarne

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:20 PM

    Comment #7
  • cyprus

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:24 PM

    Comment #8

    Wise words Scythe

  • cyprus

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:26 PM

    Comment #9

    And thanks for the reply Zele.

    And, Merry Christmas to Ed, Neil, The Wife (what’s your name?) and every single Newcastle fan.

  • Jib

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:27 PM

    Comment #10

    The cover on the right of defence is fine
    The left is a bit of a worry
    I noticed that Ciaran Clark has played left back
    for Bruce at Aston Villa

  • hibbit

    Dec 24, 2019 at 1:32 PM

    Comment #11


    what about the married ones 😉


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