Steve Bruce pinpoints the 'big thing' he MUST address at Newcastle United
Bruce’s side was beaten 1-0 by Chelsea at yesterday – and the result left the club in the relegation zone.
Newcastle, 18th in the Premier League, didn’t have a shot on target at Stamford Bridge, where Marcus Alonso scored the winner.
And United, under Bruce, have scored five goals in nine Premier League games.
Bruce, however, has pointed to the calibre of opposition that Newcastle have faced so far this season.
“We’ve had a really difficult start in terms of who we’ve played,” said United’s head coach. “We’ve played Tottenham, Liverpool, Man United, Arsenal and now Chelsea. We’ve been away to Leicester.
“We’ve had a really tough start. We’ve now got a run of games where, with no disrespect, we’re going to be playing the teams that are going to be in and around us. It’s a vitally important time – and we’ll look forward to it.
“I thought in the first half, we showed enough quality. Second half, we struggled and tired a bit. The way they went about their job, and their effort and commitment, I couldn’t have faulted. I thought we looked as threat on the break, and if we can be a bit more careful with the final pass, then of course the big thing is we have to find some goals.
“But, certainly, in the first half in particular, we looked a threat.”
Bruce again pair brothers Matty and Sean Longstaff – who had been outstanding in Newcastle’s 1-0 win over Manchester United before the international break – in midfield against Chelsea.
“They’re young, and for any player who is young, you do go up and down a little bit,” said Bruce. “It’s our job to protect them a little bit.
“They’ve had an unbelievable couple of weeks, especially the young one. It’s good to see. There were some very good young players on the pitch today, and they were two of them.”
United take on Wolverhampton Wanderers at St James’s Park October 27.