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STEVE BRUCE TURNS DOWN WOLVES JOB

Steve Bruce has pulled out of the running for the Wolves job following a disagreement with the club over the length of his contract.

Bruce, out of work since being sacked by Sunderland in November, turned down the opportunity to take charge for the remaining thirteen games of the season after talks with owner Steve Morgan and chief executive Jez Moxey took place today.

Bruce was reportedly “immensely offended” that the club didn’t have enough faith in his managerial abilities to offer him a contract that went further than the summer. Despite his vast experience in the game, Bruce is yet to manage a ”big” club, and the fact he was only offered a “trial” deal at a club inside the drop zone convinced him to turn down the job.

Wolves will now be forced to establish other candidates to replace Mick McCarthy at Molineux, with Alan Curbishley, Brian McDermott, Walter Smith and Gus Poyet already ruling themselves out, whilst Bruce seemingly has a decision to make himself. He has apparently told friends and family that he is tired of having to continuously rebuild his reputation in the game, and will only return to management if the “right” job comes along.

OUTSIDE OF MOLINEUX IN MY CAR



I can't believe this. I’ve been in this game for 35 years – and 14 of those were as a manager. I’ve played under the greatest manager of all time. I captained the biggest club in the world. I’ve strived as a manager for the past fourteen years, and now, all that hard graft seems to have been for nothing. Sunderland was my first ever sacking. Nowadays it seems as if managers are getting sacked every week – and it took fourteen years and seven jobs for me to get my first sacking. Now I realize just how bad it is. I put in so much work at Sunderland, and a run of bad results not only cost me my job, but my reputation in the game. It seems as if the fact I’m out of work for the first time in 35 years means I’ve got something to prove. Bollocks. I’ve got nothing to prove. Wolves can **** off now. I thought I could go in there and put in a shift, but Steve and Jez wouldn’t even allow me the opportunity. Thirteen games to prove that I was capable of managing Wolverhampton Wanderers? It wasn’t for me. For a young, vibrant, upcoming manager… maybe. But not me. I’m 51 years old now. I’m ready for a massive challenge at one of the biggest clubs in the world. I shouldn’t have to “rebuild my reputation in the game” with my knowledge and experience.

I’m sick of this. Wolves will be the last vacancy I’ll apply for.

I want to manage one of the biggest clubs in the world and achieve something special, otherwise my career as a football manager is over.
 
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ALAN PARDREW APPOINTED NEW ENGLAND MANAGER

The FA have confirmed the appointment of Alan Pardrew as England manager.

The news comes as a shock as Pardrew had previously ruled himself out of the job, but the opportunity to take charge of the national team was seemingly too good to turn down. Following a disappointing Euro 2012, Stuart Pearce was not offered the job on a permanent basis, and after Harry Redknapp pledged his future to Tottenham Hotspur – Alan Pardrew was chosen by the FA as the man to take the nation forward following Fabio Capello’s resignation in February.

Pardrew, 50, rose to prominence after guiding Newcastle United to 6[SUP]th[/SUP] place over the February match period – but soon after, the goals began to dry up and the club slumped to a demeaning 12[SUP]th[/SUP] place finish. He said “I’m deeply saddened to be leaving Newcastle as I’ve had such a great time at the club, but the England job was one that I couldn’t refuse. I hope the fans understand that it wasn’t an easy decision, but it was the right one for me.”

Mike Ashley has claimed that he has already began to draw up the shortlist for Pardrew’s replacement. He didn’t give any names as to who he had in mind, but Rafa Benitez is odds-on favourite to take over at the Sports Direct Arena. Mick McCarthy, Norwich City manager Paul Lambert and Toon legend Alan Shearer have also been linked with the job.

Mike Ashley is expected to make an appointment before the club’s pre-season tour of the USA begins.

AT HOME



I had been sat on the sofa watching Sky Sports News all morning. I was enjoying semi-retirement, but that was all it would be. I couldn't stay away from the game for too long. Football was a drug, and sooner or later, I’d need my fix. But I was still prepared to wait for the “right” job to come along, otherwise it wouldn’t be worthwhile. I was disgusted to see that Alan had been appointed the new England manager. I respect the work he put in at Newcastle, but I was surely more qualified for the England job than him. I’d been to the interview, but that was all. They didn’t want me back for a second interview, and once again a big job had slipped through my fingers. I wasn’t happy. I deserved an opportunity to manage a big club, but it didn’t seem to be happening anytime soon. Perhaps it never would. I groaned as I saw the bookmakers list of favourites to replace Alan at Newcastle United. Surprise, surprise… I wasn’t on the list. It had been nine months since I was sacked by Sunderland. This was the longest I’d ever been out of management. I was driving Janet mad, and Alex was worried I wouldn’t ever get back into football. If I didn’t get the right job, then I wouldn’t. I was offered punditry work at ITV and Sky Sports, and if I don’t get a big job soon – then perhaps that’s where my future lies. I shook my head at the sight of Alan holding up the England shirt on the Wembley turf. That should have been me. If there’s any sense in football anymore… then I’ll get what I want soon enough. I've nothing to prove as a manager, but give me a top job and I’ll prove it anyway.

An opportunity is all I need. I'll do the rest.

 
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Newcastle United was the big job vacancy going at the moment, therefore I was tracking the situation to the best of my ability. I had applied for the job, but my approach didn’t seem to have gone any further than that. I hadn’t heard back from the club, which proved just how much of an effect the Sunderland sacking has had on my reputation within the game. I’ve been linked with the Newcastle post many times over the years, and almost took on the job at one point, but now Mike wouldn’t even acknowledge my application. It was ridiculous. I was beginning to doubt whether or not I’d ever get the opportunity to fulfil my potential as a football manager. I’d stopped believing. I’d applied for many “big” jobs since being sacked by Sunderland, but the recent rejections had hurt the most. First England, and now seemingly Newcastle. I didn’t want to give in and take another mediocre job. I had to be as stubborn as I’d ever been over this, otherwise it just wouldn’t happen. I sighed as I turned on the television, having just returned home from watching Alex play at Elland Road. It made me proud to see his career blossom, and I could have managed him again if I had taken the Leeds United job when I was offered it in February. But I knew that would have been a mistake, and if I did eventually get that “right” job then I could look back on that decision as one of the best I’ve ever made. There was no such thing as luck - just good and bad decisions. I put Sky Sports News on, reading the “Breaking News” feature at the bottom of the screen. It was good news, but was it good enough news?

RAFA BENITEZ RULES HIMSELF OUT OF NEWCASTLE JOB



If Rafa had wanted then job, then hands-down it would be his. The fact he had ruled out the possibility was fantastic news for me, but even with Rafa out of the running, I still wasn't convinced I'd get the job. There were rumours of interviews taking place at the Sports Direct Arena all through last week, and I hadn't got one. I could take a hint, but I refused to this time. I've done enough in this game to at least be given a reason as to why I wasn't considered for the job. I hadn't got a reason, and that further convinced me that the name Steve Bruce meant little in this game now. I sighed at that thought, but I'd done the one thing I shouldn't ever have done. I stopped believing. It was just temporarily, however, as I remembered that there would be other big vacancies. Mike Ashley and Derek Llambias were infamous figures in the game anyway - they weren't the ideal board to be working for. I switched off the television at that point, trying to forget all about the Newcastle United rejection. As the phone rang, my mind was taken off of it. "Janet! Could you get that?" I shouted up the stairs, but I received no reply. Seemed to be the story of my life right now. I sighed once more, pushing myself up from the sofa and walking towards the ringing phone. I thought nobody could lighten up my mood, but deary me, how wrong was I. "Hello?" I said, holding the phone against my ear. "Stevey, is that you? Stevey Bruce?" I had absolutely no idea who this was, as I didn't know the voice and the number was also recognizable. It was probably just some sleazy journalist looking for an exclusive about my Sunderland days. It had been nine months, but the rotten bastards still hadn't given up on being able to quote my bitterness at being sacked. "Yes, it's me. Steve Bruce. Whose this?" I said down the line, eager to know who was calling me at this time of the day. "It's Derek Llambias here from Newcastle United." I sighed away from the phone. I know I wanted a reason as to why I didn't get an interview, but now I had heard Derek's voice, I didn't. I stood there, waiting for the inevitable speech. "I'm calling in reference to your application for the manager's position at the club. Myself and the owner of the club, Mike Ashley, were hoping to have a word with you in-person regarding the vacancy. An interview, if you like, to see if we share the same ambitions for the club before the board make a decision regarding the position." I was gob-smacked. I didn't expect this. I thought I was out of it, but apparently Rafa's withdraw from the running had bumped me up a spot onto the list of candidates. There were rumours that Mike and Derek had interviewed a lot of managers over the past week, and it seemed as if I'd get the same opportunity. This was what I needed. A face-to-face meeting with the board, so I can convince them that I'm the man to take Newcastle United forward. "Yes. Absolutely." I said, wasting little time in accepting Derek's interview proposal. "Brilliant. Well, if you've got the time, perhaps you could come down to the club tomorrow morning for an interview?" I certainly had the time. "Yes. Thank you. I'll be there." I was delighted to have been given an interview, regardless of the fact I clearly wasn't the top choice amongst the board. But that was the whole point of interviews. If I could go down there tomorrow morning and convince the board that I could achieve great things with Newcastle United, then the job was mine.



I had the interview, and that was all I needed. I was ready. This was a rare opportunity, and there could be no looking back.
 
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It had been a restless night, but the morning soon followed and it was time for the interview. I realized that I was miles down the pecking order, and that Mike and Derek were prepared to interview me this morning with probably no intention of actually giving me the job. But that could change, and I was determined to make sure it did. I arrived at St James Park a little early, just in case there were any journalists lurking about. I didn’t want anybody to get wind of this meeting, as there was no telling on how public opinion could affect the boards’ decision. I wanted a fair crack at winning this job, which meant I had to be completely discreet about my interest. I sat in the boardroom with a cold glass of water, patiently waiting for Mike and Derek to enter. I looked around the room, with numerous framed photographs of former Newcastle United players. The club had a fantastic history, and it was exactly the sort of thing I needed to be a part. The interview absolutely HAD to go well. I didn’t have to wait long, as Mike Ashley and Derek Llambias soon joined me in the room. We shook hands, and I was hoping that the next handshake I got from them would be one of congratulations. “What do you think you could bring to the job that other potential managers can’t?” said Derek. He seemed to be doing all the asking, and it became quite clear that Mike was the business side of things, whilst Derek handled the football part. That worried me, as Derek wasn’t particularly a footballing man. This club needed me. “I have a wealth of experience, both as a player and as a manager. I think I’ve done a good job at every club I’ve been at, but I desperately needed the opportunity to manage a club as big as Newcastle United. It’s what I’ve been holding out for.” If I got the job, then I could revisit the passion and influence. “Thank you, Stevey. We’ll contact you with our decision shortly.” The interview lasted a little over an hour, and I was very pleased with how it went. Although Mike and Derek didn’t seem too impressed, I had managed to get all my points across and that could only be a good thing. As I opened the exit door at St. James Park, I expected word to have gotten out by now and to have to fight my way through the journalists, but luckily there was nobody there. I could do no more. I had told Mike and Derek absolutely everything I had wanted to say, and now all I could do is wait. I realized that the odds were still against me, but having been to the club this morning, I felt that the impossible dream could well be possible.

I had to wait for that phone call. The most pivotal phone call of my life. And in the ensuing days – it came.

“Stevey. It’s good news… we want you to be the new Newcastle United manager.”
 
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I'm not sure if anyone's following this but hopefully some of you are. Just wanted to let you all know that I'll be posting more solid updates now that the story is up and running, and Stevey Bruce has got himself a job. This has been a lot of fun so far, so I can't wait to keep going and hopefully make a success of this story. I decided to go with Bruce as he's a hero of mine, and would personally like to see him do great things.. even if it is just on a game! :p Hope you all enjoy!
 
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im enjoying it mate lookinforward to seein where this goes :)
 
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Sorry there's been no updates in the past few days - will try and get one up tonight!
 
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It didn’t take long for me to give Mike Ashley my answer. I was delighted to be the new Newcastle United manager. In many ways, it was a dream. I remember sneaking into St. James’ Park as a kid. I’ve always been a Newcastle lad and a passionate Geordie, so it made my appointment all the more satisfying. This club was massive, and that was all I ever wanted. The fact it was Newcastle made me believe that I could create something special here, and I intended to bring success. I signed a two year contract with the club, which was more than enough time to prove myself capable of running the club. I couldn’t wait to get started. Alan had left me a promising squad full of immense talent. It took a few other candidates dropping out for me to land this job, but I knew that it would only be a matter of time before everybody realized that I was the right man for it. The news of my appointment didn’t go down too well with the fans. It was similar to Alex McCleish’s situation when he first took over at Aston Villa. The fans didn’t consider me worthy enough of this position, having been sacked from their bitter rivals Sunderland. If I wasn’t good enough for them, then what made me good enough to be in charge of the mighty Newcastle United? I understood their concern, but I knew that they had nothing to worry about. I’d win the fans over eventually. I was in charge of Newcastle United – and I couldn’t quite believe it. I'd stopped believing for all the right reasons now.

Once I had held the shirt up on the stadium, and completed all the necessary chores that came with my arrival – I wanted to get down to business. I decided to show my face at training today. Although I knew that there was fantastic quality in the squad, I was desperate to see the lads in action for myself. It was only the beginning of July, which meant pre-season hadn’t started yet. That gave me the advantage of getting to know my squad in time for the new season, and have time to make any necessary changes. As I sat on the side of Darsley Park, I took notes of what I saw from the team. I had a good bunch of lads, with the talent to match.



I was very impressed with Tim Krul. It was clear the lad had immense goalkeeping ability, especially since he was only 23. There was still plenty of time for him to grow and develop even further as a goalkeeper. He's a fantastic stop-shopper, good reflex ability, and a great physical presence. He could quite easily be the Newcastle United number-one goalkeeper for many years.



Davide Santon was another player who managed to catch my eye. I’d already heard about him from his days at Inter Milan. It soon became clear to me that he had the potential to be a star. He's considerably quick, decent in the air and impressively built for a full-back. He can operate in both of those positions, and is only 21. He could achieve whatever he wanted at this club – he was that good.



Everybody knows about Cheick Tiote - including myself. He’ll be the rock in the midfield and the heartbeat of the team. He has fantastic strength for a lad of 5’11, and his renowned tacking ability was on show again today. I think he’ll be crucial to the team's successes, and the fact he is on a long-term contract shows that he is greatly committed to the club. That's fantastic to see.



The captain of the team. Fabricio Colloccini has come on a bundle over the years, and I was very impressed with his leadership abilities today. He made sure that all the lads were training hard, and that’s something that made me confident in his abilities as the captain. His hair could do with a good sorting out – but that doesn’t taking away from his defensive capabilities! Top, top defender.



Yohan was another lad who caught my eye. He looked very capable of dictating the play, as he had that awe about him. Excellent vision, and he looks as if he could bring some fantastic midfield quality to the team. He can pick out a nice pass, good technical ability and showed both defensive and attacking awareness. Very impressed, and hopefully his play will benefit the team.



I was excited about seeing this lad in action today, and I wasn’t disappointed. He bagged a number of goals in the training match, and hopefully he can do the same throughout the season. Big, strong lad with terrific finishing ability. I feel that he and his Senegalese compatriot Papiss Cisse will be a deadly combination up-front.

I was very, very impressed with the talent on show today. Alan had clearly left me a great team, with both the ability and hunger to succeed. It's a fantastic squad, but whether it lacks a certain quality is something I need to look into. But regardless, I see good times ahead for me and the lads at Newcastle United. This was the dream, and I was already loving every minute of it.

And it was only the beginning...

 
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As the days passed, I was getting more and more into the job. I had learnt the ins and outs of the club, and although Mike and Derek got awful press and stick from the fans, they weren’t actually bad blokes. They didn’t always go about things the right way, but I fully believed they wanted the club to succeed – and that was enough for me. I felt like I’d gained the trust and respect of the players, which would be crucial come the opening day of the season. We were at home to Fulham, and I’d informed the lads that pre-season was their opportunity to win themselves a place in the side. The lads had trained well, and I was confident heading on the plane to the USA.

Before that, however, there was business to attend to. I had briefly spoken with Mike and Derek about spending money before, and this morning I was informed that I’d have 10m to spend this summer. I was very happy with that amount, considering we already had a strong squad and major surgery wasn’t needed. I’d identified a couple of targets, and one of them was a young lad called Nathan Redmond. I’d first seen him play as a ten year old when I was in charge at Birmingham City. He lit up the field, and from that moment I had an incline that he would be a star. I’ve been keeping tabs on him ever since I left Birmingham, and now he’s broken into the first team, there were a lot of big clubs sniffing around him – so I had to make my move. I still had links at Birmingham, which made things a whole lot easier. I was told that he was just as dedicated and hungry as I remember him, which meant that I couldn’t really go wrong signing him. I spoke to Chris Hughton over the phone, and he told me that he was resigned to losing Nathan. Although he had been sacked by Newcastle a couple of years ago, he wasn’t at all bitter and said he’d love to see Nathan in the black and white. We agreed on a price of 3.7m, which I personally thought was an absolute steal for a 17 year old of so much talent and potential. I felt we lacked some depth in the wide areas, and Nathan would be tremendous back-up whilst he develops as a footballer. He’s only 17, therefore he’s a long-term project but will definitely get his chances in the team. I was given permission for talks and therefore travelled to Birmingham to talk to Nathan, and I was thrilled to find out that he was keen on a move to us. We agreed personal terms very easily, despite the fact his agent was a shifty character and determined to get a better deal for himself rather than Nathan. I’ve been in this game long enough to know how agents work, so we weren’t mugged off in any sense. The deal was completed within a matter of days, something I was absolutely delighted with. Once he had put pen to paper on the contract and passed the mandatory medical, we announced the deal to the public. There were already rumours that me and him had travelled back to Newcastle for further talks, therefore the element of surprise had already surpassed, allowing Nathan to meet up with the rests of the lads before we went on tour.

NATHAN REDMOND COMPLETES MOVE TO NEWCASTLE UNITED



Newcastle United have completed a 3.7m deal for 17-year old Birmingham sensation Nathan Redmond. The teenager is new manager Steve Bruce’s first signing of the summer, and has already been tipped to be a huge success at St. James’ Park. Bruce is believed to have been tracking the prospect for a number of years, dating back to his days as manager of Redmond’s former club, Birmingham City. The England U18 international immediately expressed his delight at signing for the Magpies, stating “This club is one of the biggest in England, and I’m absolutely delighted to be a Newcastle United player. I promise to work hard here and become the best player I possibly can be.” The youngster passed a medical earlier today, having already agreed a three-year deal. Steve Bruce was quick to praise Nathan’s decision to join the club, and told Sky Sports News “Nathan could probably have signed for any club in the country – he is that good. I’ve known the lad for many years and am delighted he has joined the club. He has bags of potential and I’m confident he’ll flourish here.” He will wear the #11 shirt and will immediately join up with the squad in preparation for the club's pre-season campaign.

Following Nathan's arrival, I decided to move some of the lads on. I wanted a tight, sharp and tidy squad, which meant I had to clear out the dead wood. Peter Lovenkrands and Shola Ameobi have served the club well over the years, but I decided that it was time for him to move on. With the solid strike-force of Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse, a promising group of youngsters in Sammy Ameobi, Nile Ranger and even Adam Campbell in the U18's, along with solid backup in Leon Best - I couldn't see a future for either of them at the club, therefore I arranged moves for them. I sold Lovenkrands to Fulham for a nice, round 1m, whilst Shola Ameobi moved to Hull City for 1.4m. It was a big wrench to let players as experienced as them leave, but I definitely felt it was the right move. They weren't the only ones to leave this week, as James Perch moved to Millwall on a season-long loan, with the option to buy. I also decided to put Nile Ranger out on loan to Coventry City to gain some vital experience, and have also allowed York to take reserve team player Michael Richardson on loan too.

Some good work had been done, and I was oozing with confidence just a week before we jet off to the USA for pre-season.
 
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The lads had been training well, something I was delighted with considering pre-season hadn’t even began yet. I was prepared to fly to the USA with the current squad, as I felt confident in the depth and quality, but there were still a couple of areas that needed tweaking. I received a tip from our football development manager Peter Beardsley over Ben Amos’ situation at Manchester United. Although Krul was the undisputed first-choice goalkeeper, I still felt that area could do with strengthening as Steve Harper was the only viable backup. I rang up my old gaffer and close personal friend Sir Alex Ferguson, and asked him about Amos’ situation. He said the lad was disillusioned with competition for places, especially after the emergence of David de Gea and Anders Lindegaard – and that he wanted to move. Sir Alex was looking for around 2m, but I managed to bring it down to 1.3m. Amos was a top goalkeeper, with both Premiership and Champions League experience, and I thought it would be an excellent piece of business. I was told that Amos was extremely interested in a move to St. James’ Park, therefore I arranged for him to come down to Newcastle so that we could complete the deal before we jet off to the USA. His agent was very cooperative, and we managed to agree a five-year deal with reasonable personal terms. I was pleased with the deal, and as soon as we got the successful results of his medical back – we announced the deal on our official website.

NEWCASTLE UNITED LAND 1.3M GOALKEEPER BEN AMOS



Ben Amos today completed a 1.3m switch to Newcastle United. Sky Sports News revealed yesterday that the Manchester United and England U21 international goalkeeper had undergone a medical in the city. And he put pen to paper on a five-year deal at St. James Park this afternoon. Amos, 21, becomes Steve Bruce’s second signing of the summer, and told reporters that he was keen to impress at the club. “It was a big wrench to leave Manchester United as I’ve been at the club since I was a kid, but I felt it was the right time to move on and I can’t wait to knuckle down and prove myself at Newcastle.” Manager Steve Bruce also took the time to comment on the transfer, stating “Ben is a top goalkeeper. He’s played at every youth level for England, and also has experience in both the Champions League and the Premiership. He’s a fantastic addition to the goalkeeping department, and I’m delighted he’s joined us.” Ben Amos will wear the #30 shirt, and will travel with the rest of the squad to the USA in the next few days for their pre-season tour.

Sir Alex asked about our 16-year old striker Adam Campbell during the phone call about Ben Amos, which added to my concerns that we wouldn’t be able to keep hold of him. Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea had all made bids, but I couldn’t help but feel there was only so many offers I could turn down. I remained confident, however, allowing him to train with the first-team.

In other news, reserve team player Conor Newton joined Shrewsbury Town on a five-month loan.

We soon flew over to the USA for pre-season, and pretty much everything went according to plan. The lads played well against a variety of American opposition, turning in good performances and getting fit. Not only that, but it was a good bonding opportunity and it completely delivered. We were now fully prepared for the opening day clash with Fulham at St. James Park.

It was all about to begin...​
 
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I was confident heading into the opening day game against Fulham. We had prepared thoroughly, and I was positive that we could get a good result, especially since it was at St. James’ Park. Demba Ba had twisted his knee in training, which ruled him out for two weeks. That left a gap in the team, and also meant I had a decision to make concerning Papiss Cisse. It was his first game in English football, and I was relying on Ba to help him through it, but now he was unavailable. I decided to take a risk and start Cisse up front on his own. It was a tough test for him on his debut, but I was confident he could rise to the challenge. I had decided the team the night before, but I didn’t tell the lads until we were in the dressing room, an hour before the game.

Krul
R Taylor Coloccini S Taylor Santon
Cabaye Tiote
Obertan Ben Arfa Gutierrez
Cisse

It was a strong team, even with Ba’s absence, and I was confident as we welcomed Fulham to St. James’ Park.

NEWCASTLE UNITED 3-2 FULHAM
Cisse (25, 54) Hangeland OG (58)
Ruiz (30) Murphy (33)




I was pleased to win the game, especially after going 1-0 up then conceding two goals in quick succession. I was delighted with the lads' comeback, they showed great character and magnificent determination to win the game. Cisse's performance was incredible, especially considering it was his first game in English football and he was up-front on his own. But Ben Arfa was superb and carved open a couple of chances for him, and he buried them both. The two goals we conceded concerned me slightly. Ruiz' effort was unstoppable, an absolute rocket - but Murphy's goal was awful defending and we really shouldn't have conceded it and put ourselves in that situation. Regardless, I was pleased with the win under the circumstances, and thrilled that we've managed to get off to a winning start.​
 
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L

lynchyyyy

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Really enjoying this story, not getting the credit it deserves imo.

Keep it up :)
 
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The win against Fulham had given the lads a massive confidence boost, something that was evident in training. They needed to be confident because up next was a trip to White Hart Lane. I knew that it would be one of the toughest games of the season, therefore I was keen to make sure we were properly prepared. Danny Simpson had impressed me in training this week. He had something to prove after being left out of the team last week, therefore I decided to give him a start in his favoured RB position for the Tottenham game. It was a big test for him up against Gareth Bale, but he was a good player and definitely had the right attitude about things. I sat at the back of the coach with John Carver and Steve Stone as we discussed the potential line up. The team played well against Fulham, therefore I decided to stick with pretty much the same team, with Danny Simpson coming in at RB.

Krul
Simpson Taylor Coloccini Santon
Cabaye Tiote
Obertan Ben Arfa Gutierrez
Cisse

Tottenham Hotspur would be a tough game, but I definitely believed we could get something out of it.

TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 1-1 NEWCASTLE UNITED
Parker (88), Ben Arfa (54)



I was gutted that we conceded the late equalizer, but we were holding on for desperate lengths of the game, therefore we were probably lucky to get a point of it. I was pleased not to be coming home empty handed, but the point came at some cost. Gabriel Obertan limped off the field shortly after half time, and will be out for up to a week with a bruised shin. Davide Santon, however, will be out for 5-6 weeks with a sprained ankle. Losing two key players was a massive blow, but fingers crossed Demba Ba would make the bench for the Bolton game. All in all, the late equalizer was a kick in the teeth but I was pleased with the point.​
 
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Before our second home game of the season against Bolton took place, there was the small matter of the Carling Cup to take care of. We were away at Rotherham in the second round, and I was determined to make sure we progressed. Having said that, I decided to field a youthful side and those who needed a game. These sort of games were opportunities for young players, and I was prepared to give them their chance. There were a number of players that desperately needed a game, therefore I was forced to play both Leon Best and Sylvain Marveaux out of position. I was confident that they could still put in a shift, despite not being in their favoured positions. I expected them, along with the rest of the team, to get on with it and claim a result.

Amos
R. Taylor Williamson Kadar Marveaux
Gosling Guthrie
Redmond Abeid Best
Campbell

Despite having immense confidence in the young lads, I kept my options open with a strong bench in case something went wrong.

ROTHERHAM 0-2 NEWCASTLE UNITED
Williamson (29), Abeid (81)



A professional performance from the young lads, something I couldn't be more pleased at. We controlled the game and I didn't once have to consider making a host of changes. Abeid clinched the vital goal that gave us a two-goal cushion heading into the final ten minutes of the game. Despite being played out of position, Marveaux was awarded man of the match for his contribution to the game. I was very impressed with his professionalism on the night, which gave me the idea that he could train in the LB position and perhaps become more comfortable for future matches, as he was bound to receive more first team opportunities if he could operate there as well. It was a great night for us, and it was topped off with a home draw against Swansea City in the next round!​
 
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Leon Best had come to see me later in the night following the side’s 2-0 win other Rotherham in the Carling Cup, in which he played out of position on the left wing. He brought up that concern, stating that he wasn’t comfortable playing there and would like to be played in hisfavoured position as a striker in the future. I told him that football is a team game, and I wouldn’t hesitate playing him on the wing in the future if it was best for the team. He didn’t like that. I told him to respect my decisions, but he had already worked himself up a little by then. We had a row, which resulted in Leon saying he didn’t think he could play for me again, and slammed the door in the process. I didn’t have time for players with bad attitudes, and Leon must’ve realized that, as he apologised for his behaviour the following morning in Newcastle and vowed to respect my decisions in the future. That was good enough for me, as no damage had been done concerning the rest of the team. That was my first incident with one of the players, but I found out a lot more about Leon following that – some things that were to be admired in a way. But it was water under the bridge, as I turned my attention to Bolton Wanders on Saturday.

It would be a tough game, but I had some good news from the physio that Demba Ba would make the bench. That was a massive boost for us, but I still had a decision to make concerning the right wing position. Obertan had been ruled out of the game, therefore I needed to look at other options. I decided to give young Nathan Redmond his first Premier League start for the club. He was still only 17, but he impressed me in the Carling Cup in midweek, and played a role in our first two league games from the bench. I invited him into my office early in the day and told him that he'd be starting this afternoon. He promised not to let me down, but I wasn't worried about that anyway. He was a gifted individual and I knew he would come up trumps. The team was as followed.

Krul
Simpson Coloccini S.Taylor R. Taylor
Cabaye Tiote
Redmond Ben Arfa Gutierrez
Cisse

There could be no excuses today. I expected the lads to get a result, and I knew they were keen to deliver.

NEWCASTLE UNITED 3-0 BOLTON WANDERERS
Gutierrez (27, 65) Jaaskelainen OG (47)



It was a terrific performance from the lads, especially from Jonas. He ripped Bolton’s defence to shreds, and was absolutely walking it at times. He deserved both of his goals, and we definitely deserved the three points. Ryan Taylor was unlucky not to grab his first goal of the season, after his shot hit the post and deflected off Jaaskelainen for an own goal. I was delighted to remain unbeaten with today’s result, and let the lads know that in the changing room after the game. "Well done lads. You were outstanding today."
 
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Before I post another update, I need to know if anyone's actually gonna follow this, as I'm wasting my time if nobody cares.
 
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I've just seen this and it looks very good- will be following!
 
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