Bruce targets still being in Newcastle job in December

Steve Bruce has admitted he will be relieved to get to the international break with his job intact after a difficult start to his reign as Newcastle’s head coach.

The 58-year-old Geordie will see his side move to 15 Premier League points from their opening 12 fixtures if they can get the better of Bournemouth at St James’ Park on Saturday, representing a satisfactory return in his eyes.

Bruce said: “I think some of us look at October, November and think we have gone past that hurdle of getting the sack. I shouldn’t say that, but a lot of managers, we all think we have to get to the breaks and we have to get past the other break.

“It’s always the time when managers are sacked. How often does it happen? It gives the clubs two weeks to get a new manager and it always seems to happen then.

“All of us, say, ‘Let’s get through that first one in September’. You usually get away with that one. October is a bad month, and this flaming one at the end of November is awful.”

Watford’s Javi Gracia is the only Premier League managerial casualty to date this season, but a total of 17 men have lost their jobs in the top four divisions, and that is a source of disappointment for Bruce.

He said: “I always feel for the ones at the other end because everybody thinks there’s a roundabout that you get back on, and some people work extremely hard, do all their badges, do everything properly and then get one crack at it and it doesn’t quite go their way and all of a sudden, they’re looking at a different profession.

“I always look at that and think it puts people off and certainly when I was younger, I didn’t adapt to that very well. I just used to spit my dummy out and walk out, basically.

“I don’t know how many have gone this year. Seventeen? There you go, it’s ridiculous – and by Christmas, there’ll be another 17 as well, so it’s tough, it’s a tough gig.”