Early improvements that Bruce must address quickly
Photo Credit:(Gettyimages/NurPhoto)

Early improvements that Bruce must address quickly

Newcastle have struggled in all areas this season but some more than others that need addressing asap.

aaron-hindhaugh
Aaron Hindhaugh

Newcastle United have suffered back-to-back defeats in the Premier League, including a dismal display against Norwich City.

Steve Bruce has many critics and questions to answer after just two games, but some areas need addressing before the game against Tottenham Hotspur.

The Magpies have had the third least touches in their opponents' penalty area in their opening two games which shows where a big problem is.

Lack of creativity and confidence

Newcastle's frontline cost a combined total of £61 million and with neither Joelinton or Miguel Almiron registering a goal or assist it is not looking promising.

Almiron showed promise under Rafa Benitez last season when he played as part of a three-man attack of Salomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez.

The two forwards are yet to strike up a partnership, with Almiron still adapting to his new role as a striker, but the Magpies have only registered 20 shots so far, which is less than the 22.9 average.

Joelinton missed a glorious opportunity to open his account for the Magpies last week when his free header went well wide of the post, but he is still adapting to the Premier League and Bruce's style of play.

Too many new positions and roles

Many players are still finding their feet in new positions and being asked different tasks by Bruce compared to under Benitez and previously in their careers.

Bruce is using a 5-3-2 formation, however, he is playing no wing-backs, only one striker and against Norwich, he played three deep-lying midfielders.

It is too early to judge him, especially after just two games, however, Bruce knows something has to change, which is why he cancelled the planned day off for his squad.

An internal inquest was held at their Benton training ground and it is expected that Bruce will make a number of changes when his side face Spurs on Sunday.

Foundations fading away

The Magpies have failed to impress in either of their games against Arsenal or Norwich going forward or defensively.

Last season Newcastle were well known for being a defensive side that did not concede a lot of goals as they had the seventh-best defence in the league.

Many complained about a boring style of play, however, it got results and utilised the players they had in their best positions.

The task at hand for Bruce will be how does he get the best out of his attacking players and array of central midfielders.

Joelinton, Almiron and Sean Longstaff will be the three guaranteed names on the teamsheet each week, if fit.

However, it is a much more difficult task fitting wingers in Bruce's 5-3-2 system like Allan Saint-Maximin who was a star signing for the Magpies.

It raises the question that will Bruce change his trusted system or will he continue to persist with what he knows from his previous jobs?

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