Bruce says Big Andy Carroll is rolling back the years

Jo Harrison

Steve Bruce said Andy Carroll was playing like the striker he was 10 years ago after Newcastle’s win over Southampton.

Carroll’s introduction just before the hour mark was one of the factors that helped Bruce’s side come from behind against their visitors, with the 2-1 victory making it three games unbeaten for the Magpies.

Bruce admitted that he needed to make changes after a disappointing first half display.

“In the first half we looked like we had played three games in six days,” he told Match of the Day. “I felt we were flat and it was not really until we changed things at half time and went higher up the pitch we caused them some problems. They stuck at it, they showed a bit of spirit.

“The introduction of Big Andy had glimpses today of what he had 10 years ago. He looks well at the moment. Big Andy Carroll coming on was a huge help.”

Bruce has now guided Newcastle to a run of just one defeat in seven games, with patience being rewarded after an initially skeptical reaction to his appointment as manager.

“They stuck with the team too,” he added. “In the first half we didn’t give them much to shout about but they stuck at it. We have just been quietly going about our job and I am delighted with the response.”