Steve Bruce has said Newcastle had plenty of desire in the game against Norwich before contradicting himself and saying the manner of their performance was unforgivable.
He was first quoted in the Chronicle as saying, “I would not question the desire. I just think we got caught up in their first day [first home game]. I can’t question anybody’s desire. I don’t think they went out there and done badly.”
In the Telegraph he said: “I can’t forgive a performance where basically you don’t put your boots on. Unfortunately, it has happened already in the second game in. But I’ll do all I can to make sure that changes.”
Even if you’re willing to give Bruce every chance to succeed at St James’ Park (and there are plenty of fans who aren’t) this is just bizarre.
His remarks were picked up by Daily Mail journalist Craig Hope who said, “It is this scrambled thinking, the mixed messages and a sense of being overwhelmed by the job he has inherited which have accentuated a feeling of impending crisis, even at this early juncture.”
The Newcastle job was a dream one for Bruce, a Newcastle fan who must have thought his time in the top-flight had come to an end as he took over at Sheffield Wednesday.
Mike Ashley has given him a shot at the big time again but fans are convinced that his post-match comments show how out his depth he is.
One fan said you could forgive Bruce the results of the first two games and that even Rafa Benitez started slowly. However, he said what he couldn’t accept was this “mixed rubbish”.
Here are the best reactions on Twitter:
More mixed messages from Bruce.
"I can't question anybody's desire. I don't think they went out there and done badly."
"I can't forgive a performance where basically you don't put your boots on.”
Which is it?
Can perhaps forgive Bruce for a couple of games. Rafa started slowly too.
But, not having this mixed rubbish from Bruce. Shows he's clueless here. Likewise was the gameplan. #NUFC https://t.co/TsplVM8Fun
— Abhi NUFC (@abhi_nufc) August 19, 2019
— Kenny Wharton sits on the ball (@Nolpecker) August 19, 2019
He’s an excuse merchant. Had years of practice
— Dan Jenkins (@BrightSparksPR) August 19, 2019
Bruce trying to figure out this thing some refer to as “tactics”… pic.twitter.com/xv9Ktsso2I
— Scottie Talks Sport ◻◼ (@scottiesports) August 19, 2019
— Bryan Ferret (@TheBryanFerret) August 19, 2019
While english wasn’t Rafa’s 1st language, he spoke in far more exact terms than Bruce does. By that i meam in more percise language, choosing his words carefully – to convey a coherent message.
— Tar (@NUFC_Tar) August 19, 2019
Agreed. Smarter in a second language than Bruce is in his own.
I genuinely think you could pick a fan at random from twitter and he'd get better results than this idiot would this season.
— Alan (@alanjewels) August 19, 2019