It’s been a long time since there was a air of excitement at St James Park. I know Bruce wasn’t a popular choice, but I’m starting to feel it returning after our recent transfer activity.
Our spend has been nothing spectacular in terms of the Premier League, but let’s accept the positives – somehing I feared would never arrive this summer after no signings, no communication, no takeover and, eventually, no Rafa across a draining June and July.
Joelinton looks a proper player, Saint-Maximin lit up St James’ in an exciting 30 minute cameo on Saturday and Willems looks a tidy player too.
It’s all down to Steve Bruce now, whether we like it or not. He’s not Rafa but he’s got good man management skills which could help areas of this talented squad thrive.
Some will still be seething that he’s the man in charge, but it feels like he’s kept the team spirit high and he’s allowed the team to play with a bit more freedom based on our last few pre-season showings.
I don’t expect us to sign many more players now, but a e must keep Martin Dubravka and Sean Longstaff, despite some concerns that they might yet leave should big clubs come in with sizeable bids late on.
Dubravka is our only choice between the posts. Darlow isn’t a Premier League goalkeeper, Woodman is now at Swansea for the season and Elliot is nowhere to be seen. Hopefully that means there’s ZERO chance of us cashing in..
As for midfielders, Steve Bruce was giving Jack Colback match time, but I’m glad to see he’s not been involved at all in our final two friendly’s. Not only has Sean Longstaff got back fit, looking as good as ever, his younger brother has burst onto the scene and scored a screamer vs St Etienne.
It appears obvious that there are no new owners on the horizon, so I’m just glad Mike Ashley has eventually backed Steve Bruce with the new signings and an injection of attacking flair our squad severely backed. He can’t stop here though.
Come on Mr Ashley, deliver another 2 quality signings, ensure we hang on to Dubravka and Sean Longstaff and let’s start this season on a genuinely positive note!
I would take 5 points from our first five fixtures, Arsenal (h), Norwich City (a), Spurs (a), Watford (h) and Liverpool (a), but it looks a tough ask.