Euro: Suarez rescues point for Atletico, Mourinho sent off

Luis Suarez scored a second-half double as Atletico Madrid came from two goals down to draw 2-2 at home against Spanish La Liga leaders Real Sociedad on Sunday.

Imanol Alguacil’s Socieded took an early lead when Alexander Isak set up Alexander Sorloth in the seventh minute. Isak got on the scoresheet himself three minutes after half-time with a clinical finish from a set-piece.

However, Suarez rose to meet a pinpoint cross from Joao Felix around the hour mark to inspire the home fans inside the packed Wanda Metropolitano.

The Uruguay striker completed the comeback for the champions when he was fouled in the area 13 minutes from time and once the penalty was ratified by VAR, converted it with ease.

Sociedad remain top of the standings with 21 points from 10 games, one point ahead of Real Madrid and Sevilla who both have a game in hand. Atletico are three points behind the leaders in fourth.

Suarez heads home Atletico's first goal
Image:
Suarez heads home Atletico’s first goal

Elsewhere, in El Clasico, goals in each half from David Alaba and Lucas Vazquez saw Real Madrid win 2-1 at Barcelona, leading Barca fans to confront Ronald Koeman as he left the Nou Camp in his car after the game.

Sevilla won a thrilling encounter against Levante, winning 5-3 at the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium. Real Betis also beat Rayo Vallecano 3-2.

Serie A – Inter draw with Juve as Mourinho sent to stands

Jose Moruinho was sent off during Roma's 0-0 draw with Napoli
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Jose Mourinho was sent off during Roma’s 0-0 draw with Napoli

Juventus snatched a last-gasp draw at champions Inter Milan after Paulo Dybala scored a penalty following a VAR intervention.

Juventus travelled to Milan in fine form having won their previous six games in all competitions, but soon found themselves behind as Inter striker Edin Dzeko fired home after Hakan Calhanoglu’s shot had hit the post in the 17th minute.

The visitors piled on the pressure in the second half as they searched for an equaliser, but looked set to be frustrated after failing to create any clear-cut chances.

However, Juve were handed a lifeline following a VAR review of a tackle from Inter’s Denzel Dumfries on Alex Sandro, leading the referee to award the penalty. Dybala grabbed the opportunity to fire in the equaliser in the 89th minute.

Inter were furious with the decision – coach Simone Inzaghi was sent off for his protestations – as they had to settle for a draw that left them third in the standings with 18 points, while Juventus climbed to sixth, a further three points adrift.

Napoli’s perfect start to the season came to an end on Sunday with a 0-0 draw at Roma.

Mourinho shows his frustrations
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Mourinho shows his frustrations

Napoli had won all eight of their league matches in a stunning start to the season but could not find a way past Roma, who were looking for a reaction after being routed 6-1 by Norwegian team Bod/Glimt in the Europa League on Thursday.

Roma almost took the lead in the 27th minute. Tammy Abraham was limping after picking up a knock, but still managed to out-sprint Napoli defender Amir Rrahmani, before firing wide of the right post.

Napoli should have broken the deadlock on the hour mark, but Victor Osimhen hit the right post from point-blank range, and a desperate tackle by Rick Karsdorp prevented Mario Rui from turning in the rebound. Osimhen also headed the resulting corner onto the top of the bar.

Roma squandered three opportunities in quick succession as Lorenzo Pellegrini twice missed the target and then Gianluca Mancini headed his free-kick narrowly over. Osimhen thought he had won it two minutes from time but his header was ruled out for offside.

Late in the game, Roma coach Jose Mourinho was sent to the stands for dissent nine minutes from time. His Napoli counterpart, Luciano Spalletti, was also red carded after the final whistle as the referee judged his applause to be ironic, despite the coach’s fervent protests it was genuine.

Jose Mourinho reacts during Roma's 0-0 draw with Napoli
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Mourinho reacts during Roma’s 0-0 draw with Napoli

Giovanni Simeone scored all four goals against his father Diego Simeone’s former team as Hellas Verona routed Lazio 4-1.

Simeone scored two goals in each half, helped by two assists from Gianluca Caprari, who was also in inspired form. Ciro Immobile had halved the deficit for Lazio at the start of the second half.

The match was also notable as the great-grandson of former Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, 18-year-old defender Romano Floriani Mussolini was on the bench for Lazio for the first time.

Atalanta moved a point above Lazio into fifth after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Udinese. Atalanta were struggling with an injury crisis but looked to be heading for the win thanks to Ruslan Malinovskyi’s 56th-minute strike, but Beto headed in a corner in the fourth minute of stoppage time.

Fiorentina moved up to sixth with a comfortable 3-0 win over relegation-threatened Cagliari.

Ligue 1 – Le Classique ends in stalemate

Lionel Messi's wait for a Ligue 1 goal continues
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Lionel Messi’s wait for a Ligue 1 goal continues

Ligue 1 leaders PSG dropped two points as they were held to a 0-0 stalemate at bitter rivals Marseille after playing more than half an hour with 10 men amid minor crowd trouble.

The game was briefly paused twice because of incidents involving Marseille fans after both teams had goals disallowed in an entertaining first half.

PSG, who had Achraf Hakimi red carded in the 57th minute, have 28 points from 11 games and lead RC Lens by seven points and Nice by nine.

Marseille, who will replay their game against Nice on Wednesday after it was abandoned after serious crowd incidents in August, are fourth on 18 points from 10 matches.

Substitutes Youcef Atal and Evan Guessand inspired Nice to a sensational 3-2 comeback victory over 10-man Lyon in a pulsating Ligue 1 encounter.

Atal reduced the arrears after the hosts had fallen 2-0 behind following goals by Karl Toko Ekambi and Houssem Aouar, before earning a penalty converted by Andy Delort for the equaliser. Guessand scored the winner two minutes into stoppage time.

Lyon had the game firmly in their grasp for more than an hour before losing control in a thrilling finale with Tino Kadewere picking up a straight red card five minutes from time.

Elsewhere, winger Wesley Said grabbed a first-half double as Lens beat Metz 4-1. Ignatius Ganago and Przemyslaw Frankowski also scored for second-place Lens. Monaco were also 3-1 winners at home to Montpellier.

Also Sunday, Rennes enjoyed a 1-0 home victory over Strasbourg, Lorient and Bordeaux drew 1-1, and Troyes won 2-1 at Reims.

Bundesliga – Cologne, Stuttgart snatch draws

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A selection of the best goals from Matchweek Nine in the Bundesliga, including strikes from Robert Lewandowski, Jude Bellingham and Mats Hummels

Anthony Modeste scored twice to salvage a 2-2 draw for Cologne against Bayer Leverkusen, further denting the title hopes of a Leverkusen team already reeling from a heavy defeat to Bayern Munich.

Two goals in as many minutes from Patrik Schick and Karim Bellarabi gave Leverkusen the lead before Modeste’s goals for Cologne.

Leverkusen stays fourth in the Bundesliga after Freiburg overtook Leverkusen to go third with a 2-0 win over Wolfsburg on Saturday.

Ten-man Stuttgart scored a last-minute equaliser to rescue a 1-1 draw with Union Berlin. Taiwo Awoniyi’s sixth goal of the season put Union ahead before Stuttgart had Atakan Karazor sent off for two bookings in the space of 35 seconds.

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A selection of the best saves from Matchweek Nine in the Bundesliga, including stops from Marwin Hitz, Lukas Hradecky and Peter Gulacsi

Union looked capable of holding onto their lead until 18-year-old substitute Wahid Faghir’s deflected shot deep into added time earned a point for Stuttgart.

On a day when Wolfsburg fired coach Mark van Bommel after an eight-game winless run, the pressure on Eintracht Frankfurt coach Oliver Glasner increased with a 2-0 loss at promoted Bochum.

Danny Blum’s third-minute goal put Bochum on course for their third win since returning to the Bundesliga, and goalkeeper Manuel Riemann saved Stuttgart forward Goncalo Paciencia’s penalty, awarded for a handball.

Bochum missed a series of chances to score and Frankfurt’s Daichi Kamada hit the woodwork late on before Sebastian Polter got Bochum’s second goal on a rebound in added time.

Euro roundup: Jose’s Roma hit for SIX by Bodo/Glimt

Jose Mourinho suffered one of the most embarrassing defeats of his career as Roma were thrashed 6-1 at minnows Bodo/Glimt in the Europa Conference League.

Roma travelled to northern Norway looking to extend their 100 per cent start in Group C but their much-changed side were humiliated on the artificial surface at Aspmyra Stadion.

Erik Botheim’s eighth-minute opener and Patrick Berg’s thunderous effort put the hosts in control inside 20 minutes. Carles Perez halved the deficit shortly before the half-hour mark but, having got back into the game, Roma imploded after the break.

Botheim’s second restored Bodo/Glimt’s two-goal advantage and before Ola Solbakken’s double, either side of Amahl Pellegrino’s strike, saw a Mourinho side concede six times for the first time in the Portuguese’s illustrious 1,008-game managerial career.

Erik Botheim celebrates scoring against Roma


(L) under Europa conference leauge kampen i fotball mellom Bod../Glimt og Roma p.. Aspmyra stadion..Foto: Mats Torbergsen / NTB
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Erik Botheim celebrates scoring against Roma
Alfons Sampsted celebrates (L) after Patrick Berg (R) scores for  goal Bodo/ Glimt vs Roma
Image:
Alfons Sampsted celebrates (L) after Patrick Berg (R) scores for Bodo/Glimt

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  • A Norwegian side has scored 4+ goals against an Italian team for the very first time in European competitions – the previous record was back in the 1994/95 Cup Winners’ Cup, with a 3-2 win for Bodø/Glimt against Sampdoria.
  • A Norwegian side has won a European competition match against an Italian team for the first time since December 1996: a Rosenborg Champions League win against AC Milan.
  • AS Roma have lost a game by a 5-goals margin for the first time since January 2019 (1-7 in Coppa Italia against Fiorentina) and in European competitions since November 2015 (1-6 in Champions League against Barcelona).
  • Bodø/Glimt have found the net with their very first shot on target fired in the game against AS Roma.

Fonseca in contention for Newcastle job

Former Roma boss Paulo Fonseca has emerged as a contender for the Newcastle United managerial role, with talks expected this week.

Newcastle sacked head coach Steve Bruce on Wednesday morning.

Fonseca came close to being appointed as Tottenham’s head coach in the summer and remains keen on taking on a challenge in the Premier League.

The Portuguese is currently out of work and an interested club would not need to pay compensation in order to name him as their new boss.

Fonseca won three domestic doubles in his three seasons as manager of Shakhtar Donetsk between 2016 and 2019.

Fonseca lost his job at the Stadio Olimpico at the end of last season after guiding Roma to a seventh-placed finish in Serie A and he was replaced by Jose Mourinho.

Roma were also beaten in the semi-final of the Europa League by Manchester United.

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Gary Neville shares his thoughts on Newcastle’s treatment of Steve Bruce and why his managerial situation has been unfairly handled by the Magpies’ new owners.

Before his tenures at Shakhtar and Roma, the 48-year-old enjoyed managerial stints at Porto and Braga in his home country.

Current Roma boss Mourinho has distanced himself from the prospect of replacing Bruce, despite admitting he has an “emotional connection” with Newcastle as a result of his relationship with Sir Bobby Robson.

The club are without a win in the top flight this season and sit second bottom in the table after three draws and five defeats.

What would Fonseca bring?

Sky Sports’ Nick Wright:

Paulo Fonseca has emerged as the front-runner to replace Steve Bruce at St James’ Park and if he does get the job, Newcastle supporters can expect attacking football and plenty of entertainment.

Indeed, it was his devotion to an attack-minded playing style that scuppered a potential move to Tottenham during the summer, the 48-year-old insisting the club’s managing director Fabio Paratici favoured a more defensive brand of football.

“The best way to defend is to have the ball,” said Fonseca in an interview with the Telegraph. “We have an obligation with supporters to create a spectacle, a good show. I have to be offensive and dominate the games… These are things which will die with me.”

Fonseca, 48, has been honing his preferred playing style throughout a managerial career which began in 2007. He started out in his native Portugal and, following spells in charge of Pacos Ferreira, Porto and Braga, where he won the Portuguese Cup, he moved to Ukraine’s Shakhtar Donetsk and later Roma.

Fonseca spent the last two seasons at Roma, finishing fifth and seventh in Serie A before being replaced by Jose Mourinho, but he was more successful at Shakhtar, winning three consecutive league and cup doubles and enjoying good moments in Europe too.

Most memorably, in December 2017, his Shakhtar side clinched a 2-1 win over Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City to secure a place in the last 16 of the Champions League.

Fonseca has been turning heads in the Premier League ever since, attracting interest from Everton and West Ham before this summer’s approach by Tottenham, but it may now be at Newcastle that he gets his first chance in England.

Newcastle fixtures: What’s coming up for next manager?

October 23: Crystal Palace vs Newcastle – 3pm kick-off

October 30: Newcastle vs Chelsea – 3pm kick-off

November 6: Brighton vs Newcastle – 5.30pm kick-off

November 20: Newcastle vs Brentford – 3pm kick-off

November 27: Arsenal vs Newcastle – 12.30pm kick-off

November 30: Newcastle vs Norwich – 7.30pm kick-off

December 4: Newcastle vs Burnley – 3pm kick-off

December 12: Leicester vs Newcastle – 2pm kick-off, live on Sky Sports

December 16: Liverpool vs Newcastle – 8pm kick-off

December 19: Newcastle vs Man City – 2pm kick-off, live on Sky Sports

December 27: Newcastle vs Man Utd – 8pm kick-off, live on Sky Sports

December 30: Everton vs Newcastle – 7.30pm kick-off

Euro: Bayern smash five past Leverkusen, Juve beat Roma

Bayern Munich thrashed Bayer Leverkusen 5-1 on Sunday as Julian Nagelsmann’s side ran riot and silenced a stunned BayArena, scoring five goals by half-time to reclaim top spot in the Bundesliga from Borussia Dortmund.

Two each from Robert Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry moved Bayern up to 19 points, one point ahead of Dortmund while Leverkusen remain third with 16.

Bayern took the lead with just three minutes on the clock from a set-piece when an unmarked Dayot Upamecano crossed the ball into the six-yard box where Lewandowski scored with a neat back-heeled flick.

Lewandowski made it 2-0 at the half-hour mark when a Bayern counter-attack allowed left-back Alphonso Davies to dribble his way into the box towards the Polish striker, who simply stuck a leg out to tap the ball into the net.

Bayern then scored three goals in three minutes with Thomas Mueller scoring from point-blank range before Gnabry scored twice, benefiting from a Mueller assist and then a lay-off from Leon Goretzka as Leverkusen failed to deal with the press.

Serge Gnabry completed Bayern's scoring with their fifth after just 37 minutes
Image:
Serge Gnabry completed Bayern’s scoring with their fifth after just 37 minutes

Manuel Neuer kept Leverkusen at bay with some fine saves but he was finally beaten 10 minutes after the restart when Patrik Schick was released down the right channel by Florian Wirtz and the Czech forward fired a shot that went in off the post.

Leverkusen substitute Lucas Alario had the ball in the net in the dying stages but the goal was ruled out for offside.

Also on Sunday, Augsburg drew 1-1 with Arminia Bielefeld, thwarting both teams’ hopes of putting some distance between themselves and the relegation zone.

Augsburg took the lead when Reece Oxford headed home from a corner, scoring his first Bundesliga goal after five seasons and 58 games in the league.

Bielefeld did not have a shot on target until Jacob Laursen volleyed in the equaliser in the 77th minute. Augsburg are in 16th place and Bielefeld sit 17th in the 18-team German top flight.

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A selection of the best goals from match week eight in the Bundesliga, including strikes from Robert Lewandowski, Serge Gnabry and Marco Reus

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Watch a selection of the best saves from matchweek eight in the Bundesliga, including stops from Manuel Neuer, Timo Horn and Peter Gulacsi

Serie A – Juventus see off Roma

Moise Kean's early goal won the game for Juventus
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Moise Kean’s early goal won the game for Juventus

Juventus continued their march up the Serie A standings with a 1-0 win over Roma, as Moise Kean’s unorthodox early goal sealed a fourth consecutive league win for the Turin club.

Rodrigo Bentancur’s header ricocheted off Kean’s head and into the back of the net after 16 minutes.

But Jose Mourinho’s side were furious when Tammy Abraham put the ball in the net but the goal was not allowed to stand because referee Daniele Orsato had already whistled for a penalty. Jordan Veretout took it and his effort was saved by Wojciech Szczesny.

Juve are seventh with 14 points, level with Lazio and Atalanta above them, and one point behind fourth-placed Roma.

Tammy Abraham had a goal ruled out for Roma
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Tammy Abraham had a goal ruled out for Roma

Earlier in the day, Victor Osimhen scored a towering header nine minutes from time as Napoli extended their perfect start to Serie A with a 1-0 win over Torino.

After Napoli captain Lorenzo Insigne had seen his weak first-half penalty saved and Giovanni Di Lorenzo had a goal ruled out by VAR for offside, Osimhen came to the rescue for Napoli. The striker finished off an assault on Torino’s goal following efforts from Dries Mertens and a deflection that set up Osimhen’s header.

Josip Ilicic netted twice and Duvn Zapata became the first Colombian player to score 100 goals in Serie A as Atalanta won 4-1 at Empoli.

Also, Sassuolo forward Gianluca Scamacca scored twice against his former team in a 2-2 draw at Genoa, 10-man Udinese came back for a 1-1 draw with Bologna and Cagliari finally earned their first win of the season by beating Sampdoria 3-1.

La Liga – Fati stars in Barcelona win

Ansu Fati made a return to action for Barcelona
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Ansu Fati made a return to action for Barcelona

Ansu Fati marked his first start in almost a year by scoring one goal and creating another as Barcelona came from behind to beat Valencia 3-1.

Despite being allowed a full capacity crowd for the first time since March 2020, Barca’s ground was only half full – and those in attendance were silenced after five minutes as Jose Gaya’s long-range strike swerved into the far corner.

Barca responded well and Fati levelled after 13 minutes with a wonderful curled finished from the edge of the box.

The youngster was then felled inside the area by Gaya four minutes before the break and Memphis Depay stepped up to net from the penalty spot.

Memphis Depay scored from the penalty spot during Barcelona's win
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Memphis Depay scored from the penalty spot during Barcelona’s win

Carlos Soller hit the woodwork after the break as Valencia pushed for an equaliser, but Barcelona were able to secure all three points when substitute Philippe Coutinho fired in from close range five minutes from the end.

The victory moved Ronald Koeman’s side up to seventh in the table on 15 points, five behind league leaders Real Sociedad, having played a game fewer.

Rafa Mir’s second-half strike secured a 1-0 win for Sevilla at Celta Vigo, while Rayo Vallecano saw off Elche 2-1.

Ezequiel Avila scored with four minutes left as Osasuna won 2-1 at Villarreal.

Ligue 1 – Lens lose ground on PSG

Stephy Mavididi scored the winning goal for Montpellier against Lens
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Stephy Mavididi scored the winning goal for Montpellier against Lens

Second-placed Lens lost ground with Ligue 1 leaders PSG when they slumped to a 1-0 defeat at Montpellier.

Montpellier were rewarded for their domination three minutes into the second half when Stephy Mavididi beat Jean-Louis Leca with a low shot after being played through by Teji Savanier.

Lens had some hope when Jordan Ferri was sent off in the 86th minute for picking up a second yellow card for pulling Seko Fofana’s shirt, but their efforts were in vain.

Lens now have 18 points, trailing PSG by nine points. They are now in danger of being overtaken by Marseille, who moved to within one point after Matteo Guendouzi’s double inspired them to a 4-1 comeback win against Lorient.

At the Stade Velodrome, Guendouzi added to goals by Boubacar Kamara and Arkadiusz Milik after an early penalty by Armand Lauriente had put Lorient ahead.

But Marseille’s pressure was too intense for Lorient with Guendouzi, who now has scored three goals and set up two in nine appearances this season, playing chief tormentor.

Third-placed Marseille have a game in hand to play against Nice, who are fourth on 16 points after losing 1-0 at Troyes. Defender Giulian Biancone set up Troyes’ Mama Balde in the fourth minute for the winning goal.

Gaetan Laborde continued his fine scoring form with his league-leading seventh goal as improving Rennes won 3-0 at lowly Metz.

After starring in a well-deserved home win against PSG two weeks ago, Laborde netted midway through the first half before 19-year-old Ghana winger Kamaldeen Sulemana added a superb solo goal. Martin Terrier completed the scoring just before the break.

Saint-Etienne coach Claude Puel is under increasing pressure to keep his job after his side lost 5-1 at Strasbourg. His side sit bottom and are the only side yet to win apart from 19th-place Brest, who drew 1-1 at home to Reims. South Korea striker Hwang Ui-jo also scored for strugglers Bordeaux in a 1-1 home draw with mid-table Nantes.

Jose: Special Toon connection because of Sir Bobby, but happy at Roma

Jose Mourinho has admitted he has an “emotional connection” with Newcastle as a result of his relationship with Sir Bobby Robson, but has distanced himself from the prospect of replacing Steve Bruce as the club’s manager.

Bruce was expected to be sacked ahead of Sunday’s game against Tottenham – live on Sky Sports from 4pm – following the Saudi-led consortium’s £305m takeover of the club this month.

While the 60-year-old remains in place ahead of the match, it has not stopped a host of managers from being linked with the Newcastle job, including Mourinho, who is in his first season as Roma boss.


Sunday 17th October 4:00pm

Sky Sports Premier League HD
Sky Sports Premier League HD

But speaking to the media ahead of their game against Juventus on Sunday, the Portuguese said: “On Newcastle, I don’t have anything to say. Absolutely nothing to say.

“The only thing I can say is that for many, many years, I worked with one of the most important figures in the history of Newcastle, Sir Bobby Robson, and so because of that I have always had a bit of an emotional connection with that city and that fanbase. But it’s nothing more than that.”

Mourinho also emphasised his happiness working under The Friedkin Group – Roma’s owners – saying: “I am here, I am really happy to be here.

“I am 100 per cent focused on the Roma project, the Friedkin project.”

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Steve Bruce says it is ‘business as usual’ at Newcastle after meeting with the club’s new owners despite continued uncertainty over his future

Mourinho worked under Robson during the former England manager’s time in charge of Sporting Lisbon, Porto and Barcelona, initially as a translator before also being handed coaching responsibilities.

Robson went on to manage Newcastle between 1999 and 2004 and is considered an iconic figure at St James’ Park, where his statue stands outside the stadium.

Bruce hits out at media as Newcastle stick with him for Spurs

On Friday, Bruce hit out at the media as Newcastle confirmed he will take charge of his 1,000th game as a manager on Sunday against Spurs.

What have the potential replacements said?

  • Rafa Benitez (Everton): “I’m wishing them all the best but this time when I decide to stay here I keep my word and I continue working here.”
  • Steven Gerrard (Rangers): “I don’t really react or get involved in any kind of speculation. Especially when there is someone who I have the utmost respect for sitting in that job that the speculation is about. For me, I am in a very big job here that I am fully focused on.”
  • Brendan Rodgers (Leicester): “I have got a contract until 2025, I absolutely love being here.”

New part-owner Amanda Staveley said the club wanted to be “patient and considered” in their approach and that “change doesn’t happen overnight”.

Bruce went on to criticise the media for their reporting on his future, saying: “I hope you’re feeling the heat from your bosses, because it hasn’t happened has it – what you all wanted.

“Let’s hope you’re getting a bit of stick from the people who put you in charge.

“The information was wrong, wasn’t it? So you haven’t done your job properly.”

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Former Newcastle striker Micky Quinn believes Newcastle’s new owners should aim high in the search for a manager and says Diego Simeone would be an ideal fit if he could be tempted away from Atletico Madrid

Newcastle owners: ‘If we make any changes, Steve will be the first to know’

Staveley said in a club statement earlier this week: “We met Steve and the players on Monday and have given them the time and space this week to focus on preparing for what is a very important game on Sunday.

“Steve has been very professional in our dealings with him and he and his coaching team will take the team on Sunday.

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Rafael Benitez wished Newcastle fans all the best following the club’s Saudi Arabian-backed takeover but ruled out a return to St James’ Park, stating he is happy at Everton

“If we make any changes going forward, Steve will be the first to know but, in the meantime, we wish him the best of luck in his 1,000th match as a manager and will be joining you in getting right behind the team.”

Bruce, who succeeded Rafael Benitez in July 2019, added the nature of his conversation with Staveley was “informal” and did not cover his future, rather focusing on the team’s preparations.

Despite the optimism around the club following the takeover, a recent Newcastle United Supporters’ Trust poll revealed that almost 95 per cent of fans wanted Bruce’s dismissal.

“It will be some ‘ridiculous’ atmosphere which we are all looking forward to,” Bruce added. “Whatever they think of me, the most important for them is to see their team win a game.

“I know they will be right behind the team in an atmosphere I doubt we will have witnessed at St James’ Park for a long time.”

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says the recent takeover of Newcastle has turned them into a new superpower in football

Bruce said he had not contemplated his future since the protracted takeover was announced on October 7 but admitted he had after finishing 12th in the Premier League last season – an improvement on 13th in his first season in charge.

“I thought after matching the previous manager (Rafael Benitez), can I take it forward, can I get any better than this, how do I take this club forward were the questions I asked myself,” he said.

“But then I thought of my staff, everyone around and thought… it is still a great job.”

The takeover, which makes Newcastle one of the richest clubs in the world, was 80 per cent financed by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, whose chair is Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Asked if he was concerned about Saudi Arabia’s human rights record, Bruce said: “Look, as far as I’m concerned, I’m sure people will look into that. That’s for politicians and all the rest of it to decide on that.

“It’s a great thing for the club of Newcastle and for me, the city too. I’ve seen the transformation in Manchester – not just for the football club, but for the city too – and I hope for the area and for the people and the supporters that there are exciting times ahead.”