Steve Bruce wants Newcastle talks while Sam Allardyce turns down the Toon

Jack Kitson by Jack Kitson / 11 July 2019, 09:27

Newcastle’s search for Rafa Benitez’s successor has gone up a notch after reported target Steve Bruce asked current club Sheffield Wednesday for permission to speak to the Toon.

The Times’ Northern Football Correspondent, Paul Joyce, revealed on Twitter that Bruce is keen for talks after learning of Newcastle's interest. The former Sunderland boss emerged as the shock favourite for the vacancy on Tuesday, and can now be backed at just 1/3 in the next Newcastle manager market.

It will reportedly cost Newcastle in excess of £5million - as reported by The Times - to snatch Bruce from Sheffield Wednesday, a staggering fee that will no doubt raise eyebrows on Tyneside.

Bruce, who hails from the Newcastle area, was a Toon target back in 2004 but Birmingham - who he was in charge of at the time - priced them out of an appointment as they wanted a whopping £7m in compensation. In the end, it was Graeme Souness who replaced Sir Bobby Robson.

The likes of Mikel Arteta and Patrick Vieira have also been linked with the club, but it’s understood that they were warned off by former boss Benitez. Meanwhile, another ex-Magpies manager, Sam Allardyce, has surprisingly revealed to talkSPORT that he turned down the chance to return to St James’ Park.

“It never got to the type of talks people are suggesting but it wasn’t for me. I politely said ‘no’.

“I never got to talk to Mike Ashley. My agent contacted me, I had a think about it and a quick look at the situation and thanked them very much. It’s not for me.”

Allardyce oversaw just 24 games at the helm of Newcastle, a post he held for only eight months. The former England manager has been out of work since May 2018 when Everton decided to bring in Marco Silva.

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