Belfast Telegraph

Bruce proud of Newcastle players as ‘ridiculous’ injury woes worsen

Newcastle have 12 players out injured after their draw at Wolves.

Steve Bruce says he has never known anything like their current injury crisis (Nick Potts/PA)
Steve Bruce says he has never known anything like their current injury crisis (Nick Potts/PA)

By Nick Mashiter, PA

Steve Bruce praised his patched-up Newcastle for claiming a point at Wolves as their “ridiculous” injury crisis deepened.

The Magpies ended a three-game losing run after Miguel Almiron’s third goal in six games earned a 1-1 draw.

Leander Dendoncker levelled in the first half and Martin Dubravka’s fine saves thwarted Raul Jimenez and Pedro Neto.

Newcastle are six points above the Premier League drop zone and lost Paul Dummett and Dwight Gayle to injury – with Joelinton playing on with a groin problem – and now have 12 players in the treatment room.

Bruce said: “With the problems we’ve got we deserved something. They ran a million miles and their resilience was there for everyone to see.

“We lacked a bit of quality in the top end of the pitch but I couldn’t fault their effort and endeavour.

“I thought it was going to be repeat after we lost four players in 12 minutes against Leicester.

“Joe had the courage to carry on when we are down the bare bones. It’s ridiculous, I’ve never known anything like it.

“Are we just unlucky or is there a reason why? I’ve got my own ideas, I keep telling everyone it’s the amount of games we play and when you play people fatigued you risk that trouble.”

But Bruce insisted he will not just make signings for the sake of adding extra players.

He added: “I won’t just sign bodies, if there is someone to help us and make us better we’ll try that. It’ll be wrong for the club just to sign bodies.”

Almiron opened the scoring after seven minutes but Dendoncker levelled soon after, volleying in Joao Moutinho’s corner.

Dubravka denied Jimenez from point blank range and, soon after the break, Matthew Longstaff cleared Matt Doherty’s effort off the line.

Goalkeeper Dubravka ensured a point when he saved Neto’s far-post header with 14 minutes left.

Wolves are three points adrift of the top five and are winless in four games in all competitions – winning just two of their last seven outings – but boss Nuno Espirito Santo refused to blame tiredness.

“The result was nothing to do with that, it was not the best one but it was difficult,” he said.

“We didn’t start well and after that we managed better, we created chances but Newcastle were organised.

“We tried to the end, the goalkeeper was fantastic which allowed them to stay in the game.

“Newcastle were very tight and we struggled but we created a couple of clear chances which could have improved the result.

“It’s obvious we need some new players.”

PA

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