Newcastle v Spurs match in pictures
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Newcastle shareholder Amanda Staveley’s main priority remains sacking boss Steve Bruce, according to reports. There were strong suggestions that Bruce would be dismissed in the immediate aftermath of the eye-watering £305million takeover on October 7.
However, the 60-year-old was in charge for Sunday’s Premier League clash with Tottenham and has hit out at how the media has reported on his future.
A 3-2 defeat by Spurs has hardly helped his cause, though, and rumours about a potential sacking have intensified this week.
Newcastle, who remain without a win this term, went ahead against the North Londoners inside three minutes but capitulated at St James’ Park.
Tanguy Ndombele, Harry Kane and Son Heung-min all scored to push Bruce closer to the exit door. An Eric Dier own goal was not enough to force a draw.
Supporters remained at the end to call for the former Manchester United defender to be sacked, which could prompt Newcastle’s owners into a decision.
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And it has emerged that Staveley – who was crucial in brokering the purchase of the club from Mike Ashley – is still prioritising sacking the unpopular coach, who fans view as a symbol of the controversial Ashley era.
According to the Daily Mail, the 48-year-old businesswoman will cut ties with Bruce but the correct processes must first take place.
That includes getting sign-off from the club’s new majority shareholder, the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF).
There was allegedly some concern within the new consortium, which is controversially 80 per cent backed by PIF, that Bruce remained in charge for the clash with Spurs.
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Tensions overspilled at times, with fans frequently chanting for the ex-defender to be sacked.
It has been widely reported that the consortium, which consists of PIF, Staveley’s PCP Partners, and RB Sports and Media, will need to pay Bruce £8m in compensation if he is dismissed.
Several potential replacements have already been suggested, with the likes of Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Eddie Howe and Lucien Favre all in line to succeed Bruce.
Asked how he felt about supporters demanding his departure, he said: “It is not easy. I understand their frustration, and I understand how they’ve been for a long time.
“But at the end of the day we have not won enough matches this season, so whether you are myself or anybody else and if you are not winning, or not winning enough, then you have to take the consequences.”
“You will have to ask others on that one,” Bruce responded when asked if he has a future at the club.
“I’ve maybe done it when I’ve had the chance of a better opportunity, but I am not going to chuck it when it gets tough and we are in the bottom three. That’s not me.”
Bruce remains in line to be in charge for Newcastle’s weekend trip to Crystal Palace, who he managed for five months in 2001 before resigning to take charge at Birmingham City.
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