Steve Bruce goes back to his roots at Newcastle United

It’s not been the easiest three months for Steve Bruce.

Thursday, 24th October 2019, 12:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 24th October 2019, 1:00 pm

Keeping Newcastle United in the Premier League – and winning over fans – is, arguably, the hardest challenge of his managerial career. However, it’s a challenge that Bruce is enjoying nonetheless.

That said, there was a welcome distraction this week from the day-to-day pressures of managing a Premier League club this week.

Bruce, the public face of the club, went back to his roots and saw some of the unseen work of the coaches at the Newcastle United Foundation at the Walker Activity Centre, a mile from where he grew up in Wallsend.

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The 58-year-old watched the club’s Cerebral Palsy team, who who were taking part in free football session put on as part the Premier League’s flagship Kicks programme, which has had its funding renewed for another three years.

“This is the nice part of the job,” said Bruce, who spent time talking to children and parents in Walker.

“I remember this as a kid. I lived a mile down the road, and it was called the Lightfoot Centre then. It was built around a big athletics track. It was newly-built, and it’s great to see it’s still here and giving something to the community.

“The great thing about the work the foundation does, is that people don’t often see it. It runs for 38 weeks a year.

Steve Bruce with Newcastle United Foundation coaches and players from the club's Cerebral Palsy team. (Pic: NUFC)

“These kids, it’s the highlight of their week. And there’s different age groups and disabilities within it. It can only be a good thing that these kids can have somewhere to play. You can see what it means to them.

“Things like this go unseen a little bit. It gives something back to the community.”

Bruce succeeded Rafa Benitez at St James’s Park in July.

“I’ve been given this wonderful opportunity, and I’m going to try and enjoy it,” said Bruce.

Steve Bruce with a Newcastle United Foundation coach and players from the club's Cerebral Palsy team. (Pic: NUFC)

"Three last three months … it’s been difficult at times. But I’ve always said ‘I’m going to try and enjoy this job’, because it is the dream job for me. If I can make a fist of it, then that’s all I want to do and make sure that the club goes forward.”