The five key quotes from Steve Bruce's pre-Southampton press conference
Photo credit:(Getty Images/Serena Taylor)

Steve Bruce's Newcastle United head to Southampton on Friday for a clash which could be significant for both sides come full-time.

The Magpies could climb into the top four with a win, meanwhile the Saints may find themselves temporarily at the top should they take three points at St Mary's Stadium.

But what are the Newcastle boss' thoughts ahead of the trip to the South Coast?

"Callum Wilson is enjoying his football"

Newcastle forward Callum Wilson has started like a house on fire at St James' Park with six goals in seven appearances for the Magpies so far this term.

The £20million price tag placed on him seems a bargain in the modern market and he has showed his worth so far with his impressive goals return to this point.

Many fancied Wilson to be named in the latest England squad, but it appeared that he wasn't to Gareth Southgate's fancying, possibly a benefit to Newcastle who can be assured that he won't get injured on international duty.

And Bruce has revealed that his bright start to life on Tyneside has been aided by him settling in well at the club. He is playing with confidence and has been clinical so far, something that Bruce hopes will continue as this campaign progresses. 

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"Everyone has come through training fine"

The Toon boss has revealed that he has no fresh injury concerns ahead of the trip to Southampton on Friday, something which will please him after a few concerns in the early week of the season.

Only Martin Dubravka, Jonjo Shelvey and Matt Ritchie are unavailable, but that was to be expected given their respective operations.

Bruce also mentioned the likes of Paul Dummett and Ciaran Clark meaning that he has even more options to choose from in defence.

It would be unlikely that anything would change at the back after two resolute defensive displays in the last two matches, but the options are now there in the long run when the fixtures start to pile up. 

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"Last week's result gives us confidence"

There is no doubting that Newcastle's 2-1 win over Everton last weekend was impressive against a side who had started the season flying.

Coincidentally the Toffees were beaten by Southampton a week earlier so this encounter at St Mary's could be an interesting one between the only two sides to defeat Carlo Ancelotti's side so far this season.

However Bruce hopes that his side can build on that home result with a positive scoreline away from home, with Magpies being unbeaten away from home so far this campaign.

The Newcastle boss revealed that the mood has been positive in training this week and he hopes this will help his side against a useful Southampton side. 

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"We want to give everyone a lift"

With England going back into lockdown this week, professional football remains one of the few events allowed to continue as it was, albeit without crowds.

The nation has had a difficult year, but football fans have been lucky in that they have been able to watch their teams place, even if they can't go into the stadiums.

After the latest setback faced by the country, Bruce wants his side to keep the Newcastle fans happy and to help lift their morale over the coming weeks. 

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"The Premier League can't lose it's identity"

Bruce made this interesting quote when questioned about the number of penalty kicks given throughout the top flight so far this season.

Newcastle received one of their own last week, however there have been several questionable decisions given, whether it be for handball or a foul.

The Premier League has always been renowned for it's physically, but Bruce feels that this is perhaps being lost after the rule changes which have seen the league come under the usual FIFA and UEFA rules seen in other leagues on the continent.

Bruce hopes that this identity won't be taken away from the league, and that questionable decisions aren't dominating the headlines week in, week out.

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