Aston Villa heaped pressure on Steve Bruce with a 2-0 win at home over Newcastle on Saturday.
Ollie Watkins’ early goal put Villa ahead, with Bertrand Traore doubling their lead shortly before half-time.
Victory at Villa Park saw the Birmingham club move up to eighth place in the table.
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Newcastle’s fourth league defeat in a row — and fifth in all competitions after they were knocked out of the FA Cup by Arsenal — left them in 16th place, seven points clear of the relegation zone.
This latest loss will do little to placate Magpies fans unhappy with the style of football being played under manager Steve Bruce.
Former Premier League player Stan Collymore took aim at Bruce, posting a scathing tweet on social media criticising the Newcastle coach.
“Steve Bruce being a Premier League manager when younger, more proactive managers are getting abuse for commiting the sin of not having 20 years experience, is proof that football illiteracy exists,” he tweeted.
“Absolutely dire, backward and turgid tripe.”
It comes after former Newcastle player Mick Quinn sent an ultimatum to the club prior to the meeting with Villa – it does not bode well for Bruce.
“My view on the Villa game tonight,is that I expect a positive reaction to the dissapointing [sic] performances we have seen lately from the players and management, if that doesn’t happen and we are comfortably beaten again,then that should be that for the Manager,” he tweeted.
Bruce made four changes to the Newcastle side beaten by Arsenal, with Javier Manquillo, Fabian Schar, Isaac Hayden and Jeff Hendrick all returning.
Allan Saint-Maximin was back in the squad after an eight-week absence due to the coronavirus and he was joined on the substitutes bench by Ryan Fraser, after serving a one-match ban.
Villa took the lead in the 13th minute when, after Matt Targett’s cross was sliced into the air by Schar, Watkins jumped ahead of Newcastle goalkeeper Karl Darlow to head home.
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And they were 2-0 up in the 42nd minute when Traore’s shot went in off the underside of the crossbar following an excellent cut-back from Jack Grealish.
Bruce sent on Fraser and Saint-Maxim in place of Andy Carroll and Manquillo with 19 minutes left but the substitutes could not turn the tide in a match where Villa goalkeeper Emi Martinez was, for the most part, a spectator.
Unfortunately for Bruce nothing he tries is working and the calls to move on are growing louder.