Steve Bruce said his stint at Newcastle United could be his last managerial role after the 60-year-old left the club on Wednesday following a poor start to their Premier League campaign and the takeover of the side by a Saudi Arabian-backed consortium.
Bruce, who has been the target of fans’ ire since replacing the popular Rafa Benitez in 2019, left by mutual consent with the team in 19th place and winless after eight games.
“I think this might be my last job. It’s not just about me; it’s taken its toll on my family because they are all Geordies and I can’t ignore that,” Bruce told The Telegraph .
“They’ve been worried about me… especially my wife Jan… She dealt with the death of my parents, hers have not been very well. And then she had me to worry about and what I’ve been going through the last couple of years.
“… I’m 60 years old and I don’t know if I want to put her through it again. We’ve got a good life so… this will probably be me done as a manager until I get a phone call from a chairman somewhere asking if I can give them a hand. Never say never, I’ve learnt that.”
Bruce, a boyhood Newcastle fan, said the abuse directed at him by supporters was difficult to take.
“To never really be wanted, to feel that people wanted me to fail, to read people constantly saying I would fail, that I was useless, a fat waste of space, a stupid, tactically inept cabbage head… And it was from day one,” Bruce added.
“When we were doing OK results wise, it was ‘yeah but the style of football is rubbish’ or I was just ‘lucky.’ It was ridiculous and persistent, even when the results were good.
“The best one was to be told we were a relegation team in all but points… this was all in the first season. We finished 13th. It (the criticism and abuse) got even worse in the second year. We finished 12th, 17 points clear of the bottom three.
“I tried to enjoy it and… I did. I’ve always enjoyed the fight, proving people wrong, but that’s all it ever seemed to be. A fight, a battle. It does take its toll because even when you win a game, you don’t feel like you’re winning over supporters.”