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Steve Bruce: 'Newcastle have done everything to try to keep Matty Longstaff'

:Headline: Steve Bruce: 'Newcastle have done everything to try to keep Matty Longstaff': ID:407046: from db_amp
The 20-year-old midfielder is out of contract at the end of the season.

Newcastle head coach Steve Bruce will make a final plea to Matty Longstaff to to sign a new contract before the season ends.

The 20-year-old agreed a temporary extension to see him through until the end of the delayed campaign but when that expires he will become a free agent.

"We have done everything as a club to keep him here and it is up to Matty to commit himself," said the Magpies boss.

"We think a lot of him, his progress was fantastic up until Christmas and then we got into negotiations which took far too long and then football shut down for three months.

"We can only ask that question and see. In the next week or so we will find out whether he is going to stay or move on."

Longstaff may find himself starting at Brighton on Monday due to an injury crisis which could deprive Bruce of up to eight players.

Fabian Schar is expected to have an operation on the dislocated shoulder he sustained in midweek against Tottenham while winger Allan Saint-Maximin (calf) is a doubt.

With Florian Lejeune, Isaac Hayden, Sean Longstaff, Paul Dummett, Ciaran Clark and Jamaal Lascelles all nursing injuries Bruce admits he plans to take a closer look at the situation to see if there is an underlying issue.

"We are without seven, possibly eight – five of them are centre-backs, which is just ridiculous so it is a big frustration of ours at the minute," he added.

"Most people accept you will have one or two or three but seven or eight is a big number, especially when five are centre-backs and two are middle of midfield players.

"We knew there would be difficulties ahead but not to this severity. The impact ones are nothing you can do about it, it is part and parcel of football, but we've had our fair share, probably too many.

"I will look and ask the question, 'Is there anything we can do to improve?' as over the season we have had far too many – especially when we are playing Saturday-Tuesday-Saturday, we can't seem to cope."

Bruce also had a word of praise for the Premier League's newest addition Leeds, who secured promotion after a 16-year absence following Huddersfield's win over West Brom.

"I think the Premier League will be better with Leeds in it," he said.

"For me to say that with my Manchester United hat on is very difficult but I do think the Premier League will enjoy having Leeds in it."

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2Liverpool15104144123234
3Chelsea1510323592633
4West Ham UnitedWest Ham158342819927
5Arsenal147251720-323
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13Aston Villa145181923-416
14Southampton153751421-716
15Everton144371724-715
16Leeds UnitedLeeds143651320-715
17Watford1541102029-913
18Burnley141761421-710
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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City1511223292335
2Liverpool15104144123234
3Chelsea1510323592633
4West Ham UnitedWest Ham158342819927
5Arsenal147251720-323
6Tottenham HotspurSpurs137151317-422
7Manchester UnitedMan Utd146352424021
8Wolverhampton WanderersWolves156361213-121
9Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton154831416-220
10Leicester CityLeicester145452225-319
11Crystal Palace143741920-116
12Brentford144461719-216
13Aston Villa145181923-416
14Southampton153751421-716
15Everton144371724-715
16Leeds UnitedLeeds143651320-715
17Watford1541102029-913
18Burnley141761421-710
19Newcastle UnitedNewcastle151771730-1310
20Norwich CityNorwich14248828-2010
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