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Steve Bruce’s long, unhappy marriage with Newcastle United is finally over. The long-vaunted takeover by a consortium involving Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund has gone through at long last – and Bruce was the first casualty.
#NUFC can confirm that Steve Bruce has left his position as head coach by mutual consent.
The club would like to place on record its gratitude to Steve for his contribution and wishes him well for the future.
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) October 20, 2021
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So, with untold wealth filling the coffers up at St James’ Park, who could be the man trusted to spend the cash as the Next Newcastle Manager?
The former Roma manager nearly ended up at Spurs during the Summer but didn’t quite like the cut of Daniel Levy’s jib. He won three domestic doubles at Shakhtar Donetsk before pitching up in the Italian capital where he guided the club to a seventh place finish in Serie A last season.
Unfortunately for the Portuguese, his star didn’t shine quite as brightly as compatriot Jose Mourinho who took over his Italian gig this season after getting his marching orders at Spurs. Fonseca is currently scouting the job centres for a new role, so can start in the morning with no pesky compensation clauses if Newcastle decide he’s the man they want to lead the Toon revival. Not that compo payments should worry the Magpies’ new owners too much.
Former Hertha Berlin, Borussia Monchengladbach, Nice and Borussia Dortmund boss Lucien Favre has seen a bit of backing by Paddy’s punters to be the next Newcastle manager. The 63-year-old Swiss is without a job after getting the boot at BVB in 2020 after failing to get the best out of their talented young squad. Still, at least that won’t be a problem at Newcastle – for now.
Our traders don’t think former Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe will be out of work for much longer. The 43-year-old has been priced up for a number of jobs and the one up at St James’ is no different. His last action in the dugout was to watch the Cherries get relegated and he’ll be hoping to bounce back in style.
Graeme Jones arrived at Newcastle as their third assistant manager during the 2020/21 season. As soon as it was confirmed that the Geordie had moved north from Bournemouth, rumours started swirling about a succession plan and his odds for the big job tumbled. He has experience in the hot seat having managed Luton.
Former Chelsea boss Frank Lampard was appointed at Stamford Bridge on his playing reputation rather than managerial nous and he paid the price after failing to get the best out of his expensively-assembled squad. Normally that wouldn’t be a problem at Newcastle but these aren’t normal times.
This could be the dream appointment for Steven Gerrard if he’s looking to dip his toe into management in the Premier League. The Rangers boss has done a great job north of the border but a blank cheque could be hard to turn down.
We could be being wished a good ebening by Unai Emery on a regular basis soon if Paddy’s markets are right. The Villarreal boss might have unfinished business in England after a very underwhelming spell at Arsenal between 2018 and 2019. The Yellow Submarine are bobbing along nicely and would he want to swap that for a relegation battle with The Toon?
Former Everton boss Roberto Martinez was widely expected to be leaving Belgium after Euro 2021 but he’s still there. Perhaps the right job didn’t come up, perhaps he never had any intention of leaving? Maybe the Newcastle job just became a few billion times more appealing?
The perfect big-name manager for what could become a huge job? Antonio Conte loves to splash the cash and always delivers success wherever he goes. The Italian would be the stellar name the new owners are looking for to attract the best talent around.
Chris Wilder has shown he can work miracles with minuscule budgets, but that isn’t the job requirement anymore. The former Sheffield United boss was the toast of the Premier League in their first season back in the big time but it all went wrong in 2020/21. Wilder was a top contender for this role at one stage but his chance might have gone.
If gravelly voices and short tempers are your thing then Andre Villas-Boas is your man. The Portuguese is a bit fiery and would certainly not be a ‘yes man’ up on the Toon. Has experience in some big roles but it’s never really worked out since Porto.
Former Stoke, Manchester City and Fulham boss Mark Hughes is also in the running – kind of. Sparky hasn’t managed anyone since a short stint at Southampton in 2018 and might be considered as a like-for-like replacement for Bruce.
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