Danny Rose, Nabil Bentaleb and Valentino Lazaro were pitched into Bruce's starting XI following their January moves to St James’s Park. Lazaro will miss this afternoon’s home game against Burnley through suspension following his dismissal against Crystal Palace last weekend.
Bentaleb and Rose have struggled for form since joining the club. Bentaleb had been frozen out at Schalke 04 for nine months before his move to United.
Bruce said: “The concern with the other two, and especially Nabil, was game time. I do believe they’ll be better for the games. They'll be fine.”
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Asked if they had been given guarantees of games before joining, Bruce said: “No, no, no. They've come here to play, of course, but they're part of the squad of 20 other players, and I have to pick a team which I think is capable of winning, so we'll see.”