Former Stoke City striker Jonathan Walters has defended Steve Bruce after former Newcastle United forward Michael Chopra claimed he’d spoken to senior players at the club who ‘didn’t know their jobs.’
Chopra had taken to talkSPORT and made the claims on Bruce’s impact including that the squad ‘are not really working on their shape.’
But Walters, who never played for Bruce, has seemingly come to the defence of the new Toon head coach – taking to Twitter to voice his doubts over Chopra’s claims.
Quoting Chopra’s words, Walters posted: ” ‘I’ve spoken to some players and they don’t know their jobs?’
- Not a chance a player at the highest level can’t grasp basic football knowledge
- IF they don’t know their jobs..why don’t they grow a pair, go to see the manager and find out?
- Stop talking (poo).
Former Hull City midfielder, David Meyler, who worked with Bruce between 2012-16, applauded Walters for his post, writing: “Love it Jonny.”
Bruce’s tactics have been brought into question after Newcastle were thumped 3-1 by Norwich City, but speaking to those who have worked with him such as Martin Taylor, tactics were highlighted as a plus point.
Some of United’s players were also full of praise for Bruce and the work on the training ground since he joined.
Here’s Michael Chopra’s interview with talkSPORT.
“I’ve spoken to some senior players at the club – I won’t mention their names – and under Benitez everything was drilled into them on the training pitch: the team shape, how they were going to play – every day.
“Bruce has come in, and some of the players don’t know their jobs – they are not really working on their shape.
“At Newcastle for two or three years those players have overachieved under Benitez , but I don’t think some of the players are good enough for the Premier League. So they need coaching.
“They need coaching – they are not good enough.
“The attitude from the players [vs Norwich] was disgusting, once the first goal went in some of them dropped their heads and you’re expecting to go to Norwich and at least to try get a point – or three points.
“They are a newly-promoted team who have come into the Premier League and you’d expect Newcastle to be doing better than how they did.
“I feel sorry for Bruce because he’s a Geordie.
“A lot of Newcastle fans want a Geordie as a manager but it’s a difficult time because he’s coming to replace Benitez.
“People say the fans aren’t behind him, but once he got the job you’ve got 47,000 fans turning up for the first game and 2,000 fans going to Norwich.
“I think they are backing Bruce as much as they can.
“Newcastle fans don’t want to see their club relegated – they don’t want them to fail.
“There’s a big problem with Ashley but I believe fans are getting behind Bruce at this moment in time.”