Rules stipulate that a club may have no more than 25 senior players registered for the league campaign, and following yesterday’s deadline, the Magpies were left with 27 players who fell into that category.
Bruce’s squad was announced by the club on Friday, and the omission of Colback and Aarons will spark further rumours over their potential departures from Tyneside.
Despite the English transfer window closing yesterday, clubs can still offload players while the European market remains open.
This will have come as a kick in the teeth to both Aarons and Colback, but in truth, neither will be overly surprised. If there was one who is maybe feeling sorer than the other at the decision, it will probably be Aarons. The wide man actually played for Steve Bruce last season at Sheffield Wednesday, and gave a pretty favourable account of himself during his time in the second tier, completing 2.3 successful dribbles and one key pass per game, as per Whoscored. Those stats may not set the world alight, but they hint at a player with a creative streak and more to give. Given the fact that he has that recent affinity with Bruce, and that the Magpies still look a little thin in attacking areas, it wouldn’t have been a great surprise to see him stay, even if it was only as a squad option. What the future holds now is anybody’s guess.