Steve Bruce has been speaking to the press this morning, offering updates on transfers, possible new contracts and the fitness of his squad ahead of Sunday’s clash with Leicester.
First off, he’s confirmed that the club are set to hold talks with Ciaran Clark, with the defender’s current deal set to expire at the end of the season.
Here’s what he’s had to say, stating that he’s hoping to see his “unsung hero” sign over the dotted line this month:
“He’s not an unsung hero for me.
“He’s a really, really good player.
“He gives you some balance with his left foot and he’s fiercely competitive.
“I hope in January we can tie Ciaran up to a new contract because I’d like to keep him at the club,”
“I think he deserves that. He’s played very well for me.”
Clark has barely put a foot wrong under Benitez or Bruce and is fully deserving of a new deal.
Bruce was then asked if he could share the identity of any players on NUFC’s radar this month. He mentioned no names, but gave a strong indication that there’s two potential loan deals “bubbling away” at present:
“No, I’m not going to give any clues.
“It is notoriously difficult and especially with Covid and all that goes with it, and loss of income.
“There are one or two things.
“We’re looking at the loan market bubbling there, whether they come to any fruition we will just have to see in the next week or so.
“But if there’s anybody actively who can help us of course (we’ll act).
“Last year we brought in three loan players if you remember and that helped us towards the end of the season.
“But it is never easy getting a loan player, the reason you are getting them on loan is usually because they aren’t playing, have had a fall out or are recovering from injury or whatever.
“We will see what we can do and see if we can improve the squad.”
Finally, Bruce offered an update on the fitness front, stating that both Jamaal Lascelles and Allan Saint-Maximin will miss out once again this weekend.
That said, his comments below suggest the skipper could well be back for our FA Cup clash with Arsenak next weekend:
“I don’t think we’ll have any more back.
“The big two are Jamaal Lascelles and Allan Saint-Maximin.
“The skipper is making better progress so he might be in the mix for Arsenal.”