Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher has slammed the new ownership group at Newcastle United.
Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), whose chairman is Mohammed bin Salman, the crown prince of the Middle Eastern state, purchased the club earlier this month as the largest stakeholder in a £300m deal.
Within hours of the takeover at St James’ Park, rumours started swirling that Steve Bruce could be sacked from his post as manager.
Despite this, Bruce remained in charge with the club even announcing that he would stay at the club for their game against Tottenham.
Speaking on Sky Sports Monday Night Football, Carragher was critical of the new owners for their handling of Bruce’s future at the club since the takeover.
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Carragher argued that the owners have tried to build a relationship with the media since the takeover, and believes Bruce will struggle to remain in charge.
“Steve Bruce has a real problem,” said Carragher. “He has and you’re at the stage now where you’re thinking could a manager do something different.
“But, when you mention the ownership, I think the ownership have had a really poor week in terms of starting and maybe how people like myself see them.
“Newcastle supporters are delighted obviously. You should have seen the scenes yesterday [when they played Spurs]. But, they messed up the managerial situation right away.
“If you want to sack Steve Bruce, sack him and that was a mess and you find yourself in a situation that you’re in now.
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“But, number two, they’ve started off because of the criticism they’ve had for their human rights issues. They’re getting a lot of criticism with that.
“So, what they’ve now done is try to curry favour with maybe local journalists, local people on Sky Sports who know the area well.
“Get them onside. Feed them information, ‘we’re going to sack Steve Bruce’ - are you? You don’t tell people a story like that.
“Steve Bruce, who's been in the game for 20, 25 years. A great player, thousand games as a manager.
“If he’s getting stick off the Newcastle crowd, that’s fair game. It is. He’s not doing well as the manager. He gets paid well.
“That’s the name of the game. We know that as players, getting criticism of the fans, no problem with that.
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“But an ownership should not be coming in and feeding stories because it’s a rocky road.
“Because, when Steve Bruce goes, the next guy comes in. Who is he? We need the information. And what about when that fella goes through a bad stint?
“They are always going to want to be drip fed that information.
"You come in as a proper organisation and run that club right from top to bottom.
“If you’re going to get rid of Steve Bruce, do it now, do it tomorrow. But, don’t let that sort of hang around now and I just think the way they’ve gone about it now....they’re feeding stories early on. It’s not been a great start by the ownership.
“But, I think Steve Bruce at this moment is looking at Newcastle, where they are and the opposition they’ve had.
“It’s going to be very difficult for him to stay in the job.”