Newcastle have arguably performed above expectations under Steve Bruce so far this season but that hasn’t prevented the Magpies boss from being criticised.
He has worked hard to sway fan opinion on him and the fact his side sit comfortably in the table despite recent results shows that he has done a commendable job.
Added to that, his task has become a lot more difficult in recent weeks with injury ruling out a number of key players, as Paul Dummett and Dwight Gayle became the latest additions to a long injury list on Saturday.
In reference to that, former Magpie and a player who was once sold by Bruce at Sunderland, Michael Chopra, suggested the Newcastle manager is responsible for the injury crisis.
Wonder what steve bruce does in training more players injured
— Michael Chopra (@MichaelChopra) January 11, 2020
His questioning of Bruce was backed up by a fan, who brought up examples of his previous sides suffering from similar issues, such as Aston Villa and Sunderland, which suggests that Chopra is right to point the finger of blame at Bruce.
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After all, he rushed back Florian Lejeune to play four games in 11 days despite a long-term injury lay-off, a decision which contributed to defeat against Leicester on New Year’s Day as the centre-back played in the opposition to score twice.
However, Alan Shearer has chosen to look on the positives, praising the management and squad for picking up what is a very respectable point at Wolves, particularly given the lack of personnel available.
A good result and well done Steve and the team. https://t.co/CrEf81m4Be
— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) January 11, 2020
It is clear that the two former teammates have very different mindsets on the matter, though it should be recognised that even if Bruce is partly responsible for the injury issues, he still deserves recognition for continuing to deliver results.
In other news, fans have been reacting to an interesting injury update from one key player.