Newcastle had to bide their time over Longstaff return

Newcastle had to bide their time over Longstaff return

Steve Bruce has revealed the reasons behind the delay in handing Matty Longstaff his first start of the season.

The 20-year-old was named in the starting line-up at Manchester City on Boxing Day, the first time since the 2-2 draw at Goodison Park against Everton on January 21.

Longstaff put in a fine performance for the Magpies and had the best pass completion in the team with 26.

Bruce said: “He gave a performance which reminded me of why I put him in the team last year.

“He’s obviously had a really, really difficult time in terms of a thigh injury which he really couldn’t shake off. He broke down twice, three times with it, and then he had a case of not being right in himself.

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“He’s had to wait patiently.

“We had to bide our time with him to make sure he is physically right. He lost a lot of weight during the lockdown for whatever reason.

“Thankfully he’s got that back, and he’s reminded us what a good player he is.”

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