He’s never been the most popular figure on Tyneside, but Steve Bruce’s efforts in trying to land Joe Willock from Arsenal have seen him labelled as a complete embarrassment.
Given that Willock was unable to break into the Gunners first-team on a regular enough basis, and he really enjoyed his time with the Magpies, it was thought that securing a permanent transfer for the youngster would be a foregone conclusion.
However, things haven’t gone according to plan.
“We are doing our utmost to try to make Joe Willock work, we are doing everything we possibly can,” Bruce had told BBC Newcastle’s Matthew Raisbeck, cited by The Mag.
“He is Arsenal’s player and we must respect that. But, we can only explore it for so long – and that time is going a bit short.
“[…] We can’t wait forever […] We haven’t made a bid for anybody – yet.”
That hasn’t pleased those over at The Mag.
“Quite extraordinary… Doing our utmost and can’t wait forever… but we haven’t made a bid for anybody – yet,” they write.
“It is a like a very short play in three acts, a comedy, or should that be a farce?
Clearly, Bruce isn’t being helped by what’s going on behind the scenes pertaining to a potential takeover.
All the while Mike Ashley believes that there is a buyer in place, he’s not going to spend vast amounts of his own money for someone else to reap the benefits.
With only two weeks left until the start of the campaign, Bruce will need to move sharpish to get Willock and any other targets on board.