Lee Ryder has suggested that Newcastle United will have to be “nine or 10 points adrift” before the board think about sacking Steve Bruce.
The Magpies currently have one win from their first seven matches in the Premier League this season, but the Chronicle journalist believes that the 58-year-old is safe for now.
Writing in a Q&A for the outlet (15.30), Ryder said: “If Mike Ashley was to fire the head coach now it would be a vote of no confidence in the club’s own decision-making process.
“They have just paid millions in compensation to secure his release from Sheff Wed and they’d have to pay out again if they terminated his three-year deal.
“I honestly think that Bruce would have to be nine or 10 points adrift in the relegation zone before they decided to hit the panic button.”
This is probably not what most Newcastle fans will have wanted to hear. Their side is already looking like relegation fodder after picking up five points from seven matches, and there are no signs that Bruce is the man to provide the answers to arrest that slump. The Magpies have had the fewest shots of anybody in the Premier League so far this season, as per the league themselves, and have also registered the second least amount of passes in the division, worsened only by Burnley. Those stats are concerning, as is the fact that Mike Ashley would rather save face than admit his mistake and appoint a manager who is actually up to the task of steering United clear of the drop. Nine or 10 points is massive in a relegation battle, and unless things turn around soon, Ashley might just be signing Newcastle’s execution order with his own stubbornness.