Stan Collymore claimed that if Newcastle United fail to get anything from their clash with Tottenham on Sunday then the pressure would crank up even more on Steve Bruce.
The outspoken pundit claimed that while you’d fancy Norwich City to cause an upset when they play Chelsea at Carrow Road, you wouldn’t fancy the Magpies to get anything from their clash with Tottenham at the new White Hart Lane.
Collymore claimed that if Steve Bruce’s side didn’t pick up a point from Sunday’s clash then there would be even more pressure on Bruce as it would mean the Magpies would have suffered three losses on the bounce.
“Just look at the contrast in fortunes between Norwich and Newcastle, Norwich have got Chelsea next at home, you’d be confident as a Norwich player,” said Collymore on The Last Word with Stan Collymore via podfollow.com (29mins, 48secs)
“Looking at the starting line-up, there’s lots of youth, naivety, they’ve fell away in previous games, you’d fancy Norwich to get something against Chelsea.
“Would you fancy Newcastle to go to the new White Hart Lane and get anything, which if they don’t then that’s three losses on the bounce and all of a sudden the pressure cranks up even more.”
However while Collymore is right to suggest that no one will really fancy the Magpies to cause an upset against Spurs, after all, while Bruce’s side were losing to Norwich 3-1 at the weekend, Spurs were battling their way to an impressive 2-2 draw with Manchester City, he is barking up the wrong tree by saying the pressure on Bruce will be cranked up if a positive result isn’t achieved.
While it won’t be nice on paper for Newcastle to have suffered three losses in a row in the league, it’s unlikely that Magpies fans or the club’s hierarchy are expecting to take any points from their match with Spurs.
Tottenham finished fourth in the Premier League last season, nine places higher than the Magpies with 26 more points than Rafa Benitez’s side, and were runners-up in the Champions League.
Bruce is not expected to be getting points in that game, Benitez wasn’t last season after all, if the Magpies get anything from Sunday’s match it’s seen as a bonus.
The Magpies boss is judged on how his side fare against teams outside the top-six, such as Norwich, and all fans and the club expect when facing Spurs is a good performance that is filled with some positives.
While a result would be ideal, not getting any points isn’t enough to cause Bruce to fret.
It was a similar case for the Magpies when they lost narrowly to Arsenal on the opening day of the season.
There wasn’t much outrage about Newcastle losing to the Gunners, just more frustration over it seemingly being a mistake made by Bruce that saw his side miss out on a point, as for large portions of that game the Magpies showed glimpses of their talent.
The BBC’s match report on the game even had a section on the positives the Magpies could take from their defeat, and highlighted that Joelinton, Miguel Almiron and Jonjo Shelvey all gave fans a reason to be hopeful.
So with that in mind, Collymore is wrong to say the pressure could be cranked up on Sunday if the Magpies fail to get a point from their clash with Spurs as it’s about the performance more than anything else.