John Barnes delivers Newcastle United takeover verdict and backs Magpies boss Steve Bruce

Former Magpies attacker John Barnes has delivered his verdict on the ongoing takeover saga and the future of manager Steve Bruce.

Bruce, 60, steered Newcastle United towards safety in the Premier League last season and looks set to continue in the role beyond the summer.

Indeed, Barnes – who played on Tyneside for the club between 1997 and 1998 – believes the former Sunderland boss is the right man for the job.

The 57-year-old, speaking to BonusBetCodes, said: “Steve Bruce is the right man to take them forward and what they need is harmony. They need togetherness until the club is sold.

John Barnes during his Newcastle United days

“They have to support the manager. If they keep having problems and fans are booing, that’s not going to help the players and the manager.

“As much as they have their reasons for not liking the owner, that is not going to help the club. Until he [Ashley] sells, support them. When you’re there for the 90 minutes, support the team.

And on the ongoing drama surrounding Newcastle United’s ownership, Barnes added: "A takeover would be a turning point for any club if someone comes in with loads of money.

"They’ve been talking about a takeover for many years and it hasn’t happened, so they have to stop thinking about a takeover. If it does happen, they can assess it then, but they can’t look too far into the future.

Both Magpies owner Mike Ashley and prospective buyer Amanda Staveley have demanded the club’s arbitration process – where a July date for the hearing is yet to be determined – is held in public, rather than remain confidential.

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