Now… I don’t want to get myself accused of getting ahead of myself, or carried away, or having delusions of grandeur, because let’s face it, Newcastle fans have had enough of that over the years.
But I wanted to talk about Newcastle’s short-term future.
On Sunday, news started to trickle through that for a short time at least, made me believe that the impending Newcastle United takeover was a little more impending than the 11 weeks we’ve already had to wait, and while that may or may not be the case, the question came up again.
Does Steve Bruce deserve a chance to stay in the job?
It has been reported that sources close to the takeover are now briefing that the expectation for the first time is, the EPL will approve the takeover soon.
On Sunday, we also all but secured our premier league future for another year with what was, in the end, a comfortable win against a good team in Sheffield United. They’ve made waves this year as an organised team who have been hard to score against, never mind beat. We’ve done it (scored against the Blades) five times this season with no reply. Credit to the players and the manager.
As I sat down to watch the highlights last night, the above question reared it’s head.
Danny Murphy and Phil Neville gave the usual impassioned defence of Bruce which left me agreeing with them and left me cold at the same time. The stats they produced was their claimed evidence for the prosecution that he’s done a better job than Rafa. They seemed to take it personally that Bruce wasn’t getting the credit they thought he deserved from us fans, who thought (according to them) Rafa was a Messiah.
Opinions, you see. The game is all about opinions.
And I know not every Newcastle fan got aboard the Rafa train. But for me, we were lucky to have the man and from the moment he arrived it seemed like we were never allowed to enjoy the fact he was here. Rafa was above us. He was too big a manager for our club.
He took us down. He was only here for the money. He’d be off as soon as a bigger club came along. He’d be gone by the next year. None of these things, I suggest.. turned out to he the case. He’s not even responsible for us going down that year, in my opinion.
My point is this. I feel like Rafa’s history with us is being misused, airbrushed and even forgotten, in favour of Steve Bruce.
At the same time, to take the argument the other way, I really do believe that Steve Bruce DOES deserve the chance to take the club on after any takeover.
I don’t think there are many of us who jumped for joy when he was appointed and didn’t want him here, but to give him his due, he has done a great job under difficult circumstances.
But let’s be honest with ourselves here. In the long term, his CV doesn’t stand up. Just compare and contrast. Rafa may never get back to the managers’ chair at Newcastle and that’s fine. But to compare the two of them, there’s really only one of them I want here. A manager who has won things, one who I have no doubt would take us forward if backed with an ambitious vision and a fair budget.
Or maybe that person is Poch. Who knows?
But I think everyone knows that if we get this takeover done, as I think we will, in the short term that man is not Steve Bruce. We thank the man for what he’s done this year, but sorry, you’re out.
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