Steve Bruce explains his decision to 'rest' Joelinton

Steve Bruce says Andy Carroll will be “crucial” for Newcastle United this season.

Jonjo Shelvey.
Jonjo Shelvey.

Carroll made the first start of his second spell at the club in last night’s 2-0 Premier League win over Sheffield United.

And the striker, re-signed as a free agent on transfer deadline day, set up Jonjo Shelvey’s controversial second goal, which was awarded after referee Stuart Attwell consulted VAR, at Bramall Lane.

"Andy Carroll can be crucial for us,” said head coach Bruce. “It's pretty evident, and I think everyone can see that he needs games, but he's got through 65 minutes. What their centre-halves dish out is right up Andy's street, so it was a decision that worked. It also gave Joelinton a little rest."

Goalkeeper Martin Dubravka pulled out a string of saves. Bruce said: "Martin has pulled off some great saves, and kept us in it at a crucial time.”