The 2020/21 Premier League season has been one that a lot of teams would probably prefer to forget.
A succession of injuries, games every few days, no supporters in the stadiums, coronavirus tests twice a week… the list is practically endless.
It’s no wonder that some have struggled.
However, in Newcastle United’s case, the problem could’ve been nipped in the bud long before now.
It was abundantly clear at the beginning of the season that Steve Bruce had lost the dressing room, and the Magpies squad have never really got out of second gear in a lot of matches.
The table doesn’t lie and they are precariously close to the relegation trap door, and now the true cost of relegation without a takeover has been laid bare.
According to The Chronicle, cited by The Talk of the Toon, Mike Ashley isn’t sacking Bruce because it would cost him £4m to pay off the manager.
Further, the club have lost £40m this season because of no supporters at St. James’ Park, and if Ashley fails to secure a takeover in the summer, players will need to be sold in order to bring in new faces which will likely be free transfers or loans.
That’s bound to deter anyone with half an eye on Bruce’s job, so the pressure really is on the manager to keep them up now, even if he’s not around beyond this season.