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Newcastle fan group Empty for Ashley call for boycott of opening day clash vs Arsenal after Steve Bruce appointment – The Sun

A NEWCASTLE supporters group is calling for a boycott of the club's opening game of the new season.

Many fans are furious with Mike Ashley after he replaced Rafa Benitez with Steve Bruce this morning.

The former Sunderland, Aston Villa and Sheffield Wednesday boss was appointed on a three-year deal.

But plenty of Newcastle fans are convinced he will not be able to keep the club in the Premier League next season.

And Empty for Ashley – a group furious with Toon owner Mike Ashley – wants to make a stand against the club.

Members have chosen to avoid the fixture against Arsenal on August 11 – the first home game of the campaign.

Joe Halliday from Empty for Ashley said: "Steve Bruce is an unambitious appointment by an unambitious owner.

"To go from a world-class manager in Rafa Benitez, who brought stability and unity to the club – to Steve Bruce, who frankly wouldn’t get a job at any other Premier League side right now, in the space of six weeks is beyond disappointing.

In Bruce, Mike Ashley has opted for a manager who has been relegated from the league numerous times, he isn’t even a safe pair of hands.

"Most Premier League clubs look to the continent or lower divisions for young, promising, forward-thinking managers in the mould of Pochettino, Gracia and Santo – who bring a new brand of football to a highly-competitive league.

"In Bruce, Mike Ashley has opted for a manager who has been relegated from the league numerous times, he isn’t even a safe pair of hands.

"Bruce’s appointment is testament to Ashley’s mis-management of Newcastle United Football Club for over ten years and it’s time for him to sell the club to a party that genuinely wants to take the club forward."

The Magpies agreed a £4million compensation package with Sheffield Wednesday to bring the childhood Toon fan to St. James' Park.

Bruce, 58, said: "I’m delighted and incredibly proud to be appointed as head coach of Newcastle United.

"This is my boyhood club and it was my dad’s club, so this is a very special moment for me and my family.

"There is a huge challenge ahead of us, but it’s one that my staff and I are ready for.

"We’ll roll our sleeves up and we’ll be giving it everything from the off to ensure supporters have a successful team that they can be proud of."

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