Just a few days on from our outstanding 4-2 win at Leicester – arguably our best display of the Steve Bruce era – he’s back talking the ‘unrealistic’ expectations of Newcastle United fans.
For a man who seems to hate any criticism towards him, whether it be fans on social media or journalists at press conferences, it’s very odd that he’s decided to score another big own goal on national radio.
Incase you missed it, here’s what Bruce had to say when invited onto talkSPORT by Jim White and Simon Jordan, with him explaining why we ‘can’t play like Man City’ or break, telling fans to ‘judge him when everyone’s fit’ and subtly throwing supporters under the bus once again.
“Certain journalists who have been on your show didn’t want me here from day one.
“You have to accept criticism, it is part and parcel of it, but I think at times it has been unjust.
“We’d love to be like Liverpool and Man City…free flowing and open…you know, we’ll go to Man City and say ‘come on, let’s take you on’, but you’ve got to find a way and be a bit pragmatic.
“I make no excuse, sometimes we have to be [pragmatic].
“I have always said to try and judge me when I have a fit squad.
“Newcastle in the last 14/15 years have been in the bottom half of the Premier League.
“We would all love to see Newcastle being back to signing the Alan Shearers of this world for world record fees but that just isn’t going to happen.
“It is difficult about the expectation that is still there.”
It feels like Bruce has blown things out of proportion to make himself look better and push this false narrative that we have unrealistic expectations – which is a bizarre way of putting yourself back into our bad books barely 48 hours after our most impressive win of the season!
I’m yet to meet a Newcastle fan who expects us to play like Man City or make ‘world-record signings’, so the fact Bruce made reference to these two things and our ‘high expectations’ on talkSPORT was plain wrong.
He talked about us being in the bottom half for a few years now like that’s what we must come to accept.
For me, this is the best side, on paper, that we’ve had since we bounced back from the Championship. Under good management, this group of players could be replicating the seasons Leeds and Aston Villa have had. That’s all we’re asking for – progress and realising our potential.
Where Rafa Benitez saw our potential and pushed for more, Bruce seems to constantly make excuses, talk up opposition sides and tell us why we can’t compete.
Considering we’ve just come off the back of a big win and are all but safe as a result, it’s strange timing to throw us fans under the bus on national radio – especially when 10,000 of them will be back at St James’ Park in just over a week’s time!