The 58-year-old was only in charge at Hillsborough for less than half a season, appointed in January and officially taking charge in February. The club finished 10th in the Championship last season, but performed well under Bruce as he started his tenure on an 11-match unbeaten run and lost just three times under his watch.
Bruce was non-committal when asked about the role on Sunday during an interview with BBC Radio, saying, “Speculation is speculation. It’s in the hands of the clubs. For me, there’s nothing to talk about until the two clubs reach some sort of compromise.”
The Newcastle job is open after the club saw Rafa Benitez‘s contract expire without an agreement for an extension. The club has flown to China for its preseason tour without a permanent manager, and is set to face Wolverhampton Wanderers on Wednesday as part of the Premier League Asia Trophy.
According to the BBC, Newcastle held talks with Bruce on Saturday, and other reports state Newcastle has already paid Sheffield Wednesday $5 million in compensation for his services despite a brief dispute over the amount that has delayed his appointment by at least a week. According to The Telegraph, Newcastle had balked at paying a multi-million dollar compensation fee for a manager who had been at his current post less than six months and was set to sign a one-year contract, but the club caved knowing the longer the club went without a manager, the longer other business had to wait.
Even with Bruce’s imminent appointment, it may be difficult to get him to China for the preseason tour, as obtaining a visa that quickly may be nearly impossible. Thus, he may have to wait until after the club’s second and final match on July 20 to meet his players.