Ciaran Clark reveals what Steve Bruce told him after blocking move
Steve Bruce has been as good as his word with Ciaran Clark – after blocking a move for the defender.
Bruce told Clark last summer that he wouldn’t be allowed to leave Newcastle United amid speculation linking him with Crystal Palace.
At the time, Clark, frustrated at a lack of first-team football the previous season, was considering his future.
Speaking to the Gazette in October, Clark said: “Over the last couple of seasons, I’ve found myself in and out of the team. I’ve wanted to just play more regularly.”
Clark, in the team held to a goalless draw at St James's Park by Norwich City on Saturday, has already made 12 Premier League starts under Bruce, which is than he did last season.
“I’ve been training well and working hard, really, and just trying to keep going and improving and doing what I can for the team,” said the 30-year-old. “You need that bit of luck. Someone might miss a game, and you might miss a chance.”
Bruce spoke to Clark after telling him that he wouldn’t be allowed to leave the club.
“The start of the season the manager did say to me if I keep working hard in training eventually I’d get a chance, and it’s then up to you to try and take it,” said the Republic of Ireland international. “That’s all I did, keep working hard in training and hoping if I did get my chance that I’d take it. Luckily enough I have.”
Clark’s run in the team late last year was interrupted by a “frustrating" injury.
“It was frustrating,” he said. “I had a good run of games. There were some decent results. I knew it was a busy Christmas schedule, so we needed as many players fit as we could.
“I’m glad to be back now and playing again and helping the team.”
Clark and his team-mates take on Oxford United in an FA Cup replay at the Kassam Stadium tomorrow night.
“We’d love nothing more than a decent cup run,” said Clark, signed from Aston Villa in 2016.