Steve Bruce addresses his relationship with Matty Longstaff at Newcastle United
Steve Bruce has addressed Matty Longstaff’s situation at Newcastle United – after the midfielder turned out for the club’s Under-23 side.
Longstaff – who hasn’t featured for the first team since mid-January – played in the Premier League 2 fixture against Sunderland at the Academy of Light on Monday, which ended 1-1.
The 20-year-old signed a new two-year deal at the club last summer after a breakthrough season at St James’s Park.
However, Longstaff – who missed the start of the campaign with an injury – has only made five Premier League appearances this season.
Asked if Longstaff was being readied for a first-team recall against Aston Villa tomorrow night, Bruce said: “He hasn’t been away. It’s just that obviously he hasn’t found himself in the team.
"I think with somebody so young, it was important that he got some game time under his belt. We thought it was a good opportunity to get 90 minutes under his belt, which is never a bad thing.”
Bruce was asked about his relationship with Longstaff, whose elder brother Sean, 23, has found himself on the fringes at the relegation-threatened club since January’s 1-0 defeat to Sheffield United.
“It’s fine,” said Bruce. “I have the same every week. I can only pick 11. I’ve got 15 others who are champing at the bit, disappointed.
"Matty, at the moment, is not in the side, but let’s not forget he’s got a huge, big future. There’s no question about that. He had a big rise last year, and finds himself not in the team. He has to stick with it. His time will come again, that’s for sure.”