Steve Bruce looking for a different kind of FA Cup upset with Newcastle United

Steve Bruce knows live TV coverage of Newcastle United’s FA Cup tie at Rochdale means only one thing – a sniff of an upset.

Friday, 3rd January 2020, 3:20 pm
Newcastle United's English head coach Steve Bruce looks on during the English Premier League football match between Newcastle United and Leicester City at St James' Park in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, north east England on January 1, 2020. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images)

But Bruce is determined to make sure armchair fans, TV bosses and critics will be left disappointed with his United side dumping their plucky, League One opponents out of the competition.

“The TV cameras are there for an upset and we treat Rochdale with respect,” said Bruce.

“It’s a great competition and we have to be at our best and be ready for it.”

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While manager’s of United's top flight rivals will be weighing up fielding under-strength sides in the cup, Bruce has seen that option snatched away from him in recent weeks with an injury crisis engulfing his Premier League squad.

Even if he could name a weaker side, Bruce has always seen a cup run as a priority at St James’s Park.

“We see the FA Cup as one to progress, move forward,” he said.

“We are a club that can compete in it. Can we win it, who knows? We got there with Hull and their supporters remember it. We can win five games and get to Wembley.

“It can only be a good thing, a positive thing for the club. At Hull is was a very nice distraction, we enjoyed it. We won’t catch Liverpool and win the Premier League this year, so let’s embrace the FA Cup.

“We will be as strong as we possibly can, we will be strong enough in team and formation to get a result. I’m confident of that.”