Furious Steve Bruce tells Miguel Almiron he won’t be replacing Luis Suarez

Steve Bruce has scoffed at Miguel Almiron's hopes of replacing Romelu Lukaku or Luis Suarez.

The Newcastle United boss “chuckled” at claims his Paraguayan winger could end up joining Inter Milan or Atletico Madrid.

Instead he wants Almiron to create and score more at St James' Park because has scored just four times in 48 Premier League starts, with just three assists.

Bruce branded agent Daniel Campos an “amateur looking to make a fast buck” and “Mikey Mouse” for claiming this week that Almiron wants to leave.

He said Inter and Madrid had scouted the £20m winger, who joined the Geordies after winning the MLS championship with Atlanta.

Bruce blasted: “Quite remarkable the two clubs, what was it? Milan, and Atletico Madrid! What, they are going to ditch Suarez, and ditch Lukaku, are they?! Really, I wonder.

“To see these sort of comments, to start with I had a chuckle at them, to think: Oh my god, they are that ridiculous. Am I really reading this. Unbelievable.

“He has played 53 times (inc as a sub) in the Premier League. The majority of that last year I played him off the front in a No10. He found it difficult to score and create the goals you need in that situation.

“So let's not fluff it up to be better than it is. They are the simple facts. However he is a very good player and I find it disrespectful when an agent, a Mickey Mouse one at that, can be so disrespectful.

“It is there to see. Yes we could do with him scoring more. And creating a bit more, yes, of course. That is the hard part in the Premier League.”

Newcastle wanted Almiron back on Tyneside early after he drew against Lionel Messi and Argentina, and was suspended for Paraguay's game against Bolivia on Tuesday.

He stayed to support, but couldn't get a quick flight and ended up back for training 24 hours before the kick off against Chelsea.

Callum Wilson has trained as he recovers from a hamstring injury and has a chance to start, but Bruce “won't take any risks.” Ryan Fraser is out.

Bruce will haul Almiron in to clear the air and added: “If it was Almiron knocking on my door I would listen. He is an unbelievable pro.”

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Earlier this week Almiron's agent Daniel Campos said: “When everything returns to normal, Miguel will take a leap in quality. If it wasn’t for the pandemic, he would’ve been elsewhere. Maybe in June, he’ll make that jump."

Bruce says he was unmoved by hearing ex-Toon boss Rafa Benitez hinting he could return one day if there was a takeover.

He replied: “It doesn't bother me a jot. Rafa is entitled to talk, whatever he wants to do. Look, he left 18 months ago for his own personal reasons. As far as I'm concerned, I can't get involved with that.”

Possible Newcastle team v Chelsea:

(5-3-1-1) Darlow – Murphy, Schar, Lascelles, Fernandez, Lewis – Hayden, Longstaff, Hendrick – Saint Maximin – Wilson

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