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

Steve Bruce's Newcastle United side put in a spirited performance against Arsenal on Saturday night but it wasn't enough to send them through to the fourth round of the Emirates FA Cup.

Coming into the game, the Magpies were second favourite to claim victory against the FA Cup holders, but on another day could have secured their progress in 90 minutes before the eventual extra time spell which saw the Gunners come out on top.

Strikes from Emile Smith-Rowe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang saw Bruce's men off in the closing stages leaving Newcastle with virtually no hope given the timing.

Bruce reacts to the game...

"I couldn't be more pleased with how they've gone about it."

The Newcastle boss praised his side's effort at the Emirates Stadium but did admit that his side lacked the quality required in the key moments.

In the second half of normal time in particular, his side arguably had the best chances of the game to that point but it was poor finishing from Andy Carroll on both occasions that meant that the Magpies couldn't find that breakthrough.

Bruce felt that these big chances were the difference and that his players let their opponents off the hook, allowing them to make up for their poor showing in extra time.

In the end, Arsenal looked fresher in the closing stages and took advantage of a tiring Newcastle defence who had defended well up until Smith-Rowe's opener where a Ciaran Clark error was punished. 

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"We rue the missed chances."

Bruce knows that his side should have made their late chances count, admitting that they simply have to be taken in games against opposition such as Arsenal.

The manager felt that the game could have gone either way but he was frustrated at the lack of cutting edge in those key moments of the game. 

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"There's nobody more disappointed that Andy."

The previously mentioned Carroll does at least know that his misses proved costly with the striker feeling that he should have done much better.

Despite these frustrations in front of goal, Bruce praised the powerful forward stating that he "led the line well".

It was just a shame that he couldn't cap off a strong performance with at least one goal that would certainly have seen the Magpies through to the next round of the competition. 

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"Elliot Anderson has a big future ahead of him."

Young academy graduate Elliot Anderson made his first team debut at the Emirates as he came on as a second half substitute.

Newcastle supporters appear to have been impressed with the youngsters showing and Bruce was one of those to sing his praises for him.

Anderson is someone who has been named on the bench on a number of occasions so far throughout the 2020/21 season but up until Saturday night he hadn't featured in the senior side.

Anderson is one of the most talked about young players at the club and Bruce hopes that he can go on to become a top player. 

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"Hopefully we can freshen up the team on Tuesday."

Newcastle return to action on Tuesday night with a trip to Bramall Lane where a Sheffield United side without a single Premier League win this season await.

There were questions asked when Callum Wilson and Jonjo Shelvey didn't even feature in the match day squad at the Emirates, with Bruce later revealing that this was a precautionary matter after the recent Covid-19 issues at the club.

Someone who was confirmed to have had the virus was captain Jamaal Lascelles who was actually withdrawn at half-time against the Gunners, with Bruce revealed that this was due to fatigue and a lack of recent match action.

The Newcastle boss is keen to have more options available to him in South Yorkshire on Tuesday. 

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