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Newcastle boss Bruce hits out at replacement claims

Newcastle United boss Steve Bruce has hit out claims he'll be replaced when the club is sold.

Bruce admits waking up to talk of Mauricio Pochettino replacing him or Rafa Benitez being poised for a St James' Park return has upset him.

“Some of it has been disrespectful," said Bruce, who is targeting a top ten finish this season.

“But I've been in the job long enough to know the one thing you need more than anything is a thick skin and try and ride the storm.

“It's never easy and it becomes unsettling – not for myself but for other people who are close to me like my staff.

“With the takeover, I think everyone is a bit bored with it. We've heard it all before and it seems to drag on. But the one thing I can't do is let it be an excuse.

“We've just got to focus on what we are paid to do, make sure we've prepared the players as best we can and win football matches.

“Take away that uncertainty and use it a little bit if we can.

“People have written off this team and myself all season – let's answer it in the best possible way by finishing the season as well as we can and catching Burnley who are four points ahead of us.

“But first, we have to secure Premier League status. That has been my job since the day I walked through the door.

“We've given ourselves a good opportunity to do that so let's get to that magical 40 points as quickly as possible so that we can enjoy the rest of the season."

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Paul Vegas

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