Gerrard, Conte, Howe or Martinez? Who do the bookies have as favourite to replace Bruce at Newcastle

With Newcastle United’s takeover having been given the green light, we could be about to see some major changes at St James' Park – starting with the manager.

The £300million Saudi-led takeover over of Newcastle United should finally end the suffering for Magpies fans - and most probably manager Steve Bruce.

Bruce has been on the brink of losing his job for so long now the end will probably come as a blessed relief, especially with a reported £6million compensation package thrown in.

Bruce will point to a lack of financial backing from owner Mike Ashley and injuries for his side's Premier League woes. However, a run of seven wins from 37 games tells its own story.

Here are the men most likely to replace him at St James' Park.

Steven Gerrard

The Rangers manager and Liverpool legend has had his odds slashed as the takeover approaches.

An outsider at 16/1 on Thursday morning, Gerrard has seen his odds shorten to 9/2 with Planet Sport Bet.

Appointing Gerrard appears to be a much more glamorous fit than a manager currently without a job.

The former Liverpool midfielder has done great things at Rangers and could be easily tempted south with the offer of a blank cheque book.

Eddie Howe

Eddie Howe Bournemouth manager Jul20

It's been over a year since Eddie Howe was last in management and according to Planet Sport Bet, he may have to wait a while longer.

The 43-year-old was last in charge of Bournemouth where he enjoyed major success, taking the club from the lows of League Two to the highs of the Premier League.

The former Cherries defender returned to the club as manager in 2008 and was immediately tasked with saving the side from relegation to the National League. Howe led the club out of the relegation zone and the season after, he helped the Cherries to League One promotion.

Howe briefly moved to Burnley but after an uninspiring spell, he returned to Bournemouth to pick up where he left off.

In 2013, Howe led the club to the Championship. Two years later, he memorably earned Premier League promotion where the club stayed for five seasons before ultimately falling back down to the second tier.

Relegation marked the end of Howe's time at Bournemouth but is he the right man to take charge of Newcastle?

Howe thrived at the Vitality Stadium - a club which he took out of desperation and as a result, gained a lot of respect from fans and people above him. It was that decade-long journey which made him almost untouchable.

This certainly wouldn't be the case in the north-east. The new ownership group are unlikely to know about his past achievements. What's more, the expectations from Newcastle supporters will be at an all-time high now the takeover has been given the green light.

Nevertheless, Howe is an ambitious young manager and many fans would be intrigued to see what he's capable of with significant financial backing.

Antonio Conte

Antonio Conte Inter Milan manager May21

Antonio Conte is currently the frontrunner to replace Bruce at St James' Park having been priced up at 3/1.

The 52-year-old has been out of work for over four months after leaving Inter Milan at the end of last season.

The Italian led the club to their first Serie A title in 11 years, winning the league with a 12-point advantage over second-placed AC Milan.

Conte is no stranger to the Premier League having worked at Chelsea between 2016 and 2018.

In his first season at Stamford Bridge, Conte won the league with two games to spare. He also oversaw a record-breaking run of 13 consecutive Premier League victories and at the end of the campaign, he officially set the new record for the most wins in a single season - racking up 30 league victories from 38 games.

His second season was far less successful with the club finishing fifth in the league and missing out on Champions League qualification.

Nevertheless, Conte was still able to bring silverware to the Bridge after claiming the FA Cup with a 1-0 win over Manchester United.

If Newcastle are looking for a winner, they certainly have one in Conte. Question is, are they capable of handling the Italian's volcanic personality?

Conte is often credited for his tactical nous and repopularising the 3-5-2 formation. However, in order to work wonders and bring silverware to the north-east, he would undoubtedly need a lot of financial backing.

Now that money might not be an issue, the thought of Conte joining the Magpies is no longer a dream. It's a serious possibility.

Chris Wilder

Chris Wilder Sheffield United manager Feb21

Former Sheffield United boss, Chris Wilder, was one of the early frontrunners at the time of the takeover. However, he has since slipped down the pecking order and is currently available at 33/1.

The 54-year-old sprung into the mainstream managerial limelight after taking the Blades into the Premier League on a shoestring budget.

Wilder was able to lead the club to their best top-flight finish since 1992 as the South Yorkshire outfit ended the 2019/20 season in ninth place.

The following campaign didn't go to plan. United suffered from second-season syndrome and ultimately dropped out of the Premier League.

Wilder left the club by mutual consent just two months before the end of the season, leaving the Blades bottom of the table with 14 points from 28 games.

With Newcastle currently second bottom, Wilder would be in a familiar position of fighting against relegation should he become the club's new manager. The main difference being, he will have access to a platinum card.

Roberto Martinez

Roberto Martinez Belgium manager Sep21

Roberto Martinez already has a job. The question is, for how long?

The Spaniard is currently in charge of the Belgium national side but despite being competitive in major tournaments, the Red Devils are yet to claim any silverware under the 48-year-old.

Martinez is expected to remain in his post until the end of the 2022 World Cup, making him an outsider for the Newcastle job.

Nevertheless, stranger things have happened in soccer. Should the new ownership group present Martinez with an exciting vision for the club, there's nothing to suggest why he wouldn't jump ship to take the opportunity.

Frank Lampard

Frank Lampard Chelsea manager Jan21

Is Frank Lampard's time in the managerial wilderness about to end? The latest odds from Planet Sport Bet would suggest the answer is no.

At around 12/1, the former Chelsea boss is unlikely to take his place in the dugout at St James' Park.

Nevertheless, the 43-year-old would certainly make for an intriguing appointment.

In his short stint at Stamford Bridge, Lampard won 44 of his 84 games in charge and most notably, helped to promote a lot of young players during a transfer embargo.

While Chelsea proved a step too far for Lampard, Newcastle may be the perfect fit. Question is, are the new owners willing to take a chance on this managerial newbie?

Graeme Jones

Graeme Jones Newcastle assistant manager Mar21

Newcastle United's assistant manager Graeme Jones may just be in the right place at the right time.

The 51-year-old is a north-east native and knows the current situation at the club inside out.

However, he is also a relative outsider for the role. One of the major reasons is his lack of managerial experience at the highest level.

Before his role with Newcastle, Jones managed Luton Town - a stint which ended in disappointment as the manager left the club in the relegation zone.

Little surprise then to see him down the list at 25/1.

Jose Mourinho

Jose Mourinho Porto manager Oct21

Current AS Roma manager Jose Mourinho is always going to be linked with a Premier League managerial role.

Considering the Special One has just began his new managerial tenure in Italy, it's highly unlikely that we'll see him taking over the reins from Bruce.

Secretly, most Premier League fans would love to see the 58-year-old back in England. However, after disappointing spells with Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur, he might not share the same excitement.

Acquiring the services of a world-class manager will undoubtedly be the goal of the new owners. Mourinho fits that bill but perhaps this is not the right time.

At 14/1, the Portuguese manager is one to avoid in this market.

Longshots for the Newcastle manager's job

Alan Shearer Newcastle manager May09 with Iain Dowie

There are other names who also deserve a mention.

Firstly, Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri is currently available at 33/1.

The Italian has got off to a tough start to his second spell at Juve and his position doesn't exactly look settled.

Laurent Blanc is also available in the betting at 25s. The former France and Paris Saint-Germain manager is currently in charge of Al-Rayyan Sports Club in Qatar.

A chance to manage in the Premier League would surely be a lucrative proposition for Blanc. Especially if the vision from suits upstairs is an exciting one.

Last but not least, Alan Shearer is available at 66/1.

The 51-year-old is a Newcastle god but would he fancy another crack at being the club's manager?

Shearer tried to save the club from relegation back in 2009 but ultimately came up short. The former Magpies forward would have a similar task on his hands if he took on the role this time too.

READ MORE: Six Newcastle managers who were worse than Steve Bruce

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