This player is thriving at Newcastle United – after Steve Bruce blocked a move
Ciaran Clark’s making up for lost time at Newcastle United – after finding himself back in the starting XI.
However, Steve Bruce blocked a move for Clark in July as Florian Lejeune was still months away from returning from knee surgery.
And Clark had to wait – and wait – for a chance, as Bruce, fielding three centre-halves, went with Jamaal Lascelles, Fabian Schar and Paul Dummett.
The 30-year-old finally got a chance against Manchester United following the club’s 5-0 defeat to Leicester City – and he hasn’t looked back.
Clark started the club’s last five Premier League games – and scored in two of them, most recently last weekend’s 2-1 win over Bournemouth at St James’s Park.
“Obviously, at the start of the season it was a new manager, and he wanted his squad and players to stay,” said Clark, away with the Republic of Ireland after being recalled to the squad by Mick McCarthy.
“He had his starting XI he went with. It started OK, and it came to a point where he decided to change it. I managed to get in there, and luckily got my chance and we got the win that day. I’m just pleased to be back in. It’s an opportunity I’ve been working for and waiting for. I managed to get the chance.”
Clark got his first goal in the club’s 3-2 win over West Ham United at the London Stadium earlier this month.
“I was delighted to get the goal – it’s a nice feeling to score goals,” said Clark. “At the end of the day, we want to get the three points – we don’t care where the goals are coming from as long as we’re getting them."
Clark’s performance didn’t go unnoticed.
"I watched him at West Ham,” said McCarthy. “He’s scored a couple of goals, but he’s not somebody I need to watch. He’s not like a new player we have suddenly found.
"I know Ciaran – he was in my first squad. Now he’s been playing, Newcastle have had some good results. Maybe that’s partly down to him as well."