Steve Bruce has claimed that the “sickness” inside him has meant he has enjoyed a challenging first few months as Newcastle boss.
Bruce replaced the popular Rafa Benitez at St James’ Park over the summer and was instantly labelled as a yes-man to owner Mike Ashley.
There have been constant protests from fans and dwindling crowds for their opening home games.
But the 58-year-old has insisted that despite mixed results, he has lapped up his first eight weeks in the job.
“Make no mistake, I knew, early on, it was going to be difficult. I always knew that the start we had is equally more difficult.” he told the Newcastle Chronicle. “To calm the storm that everybody was riding at the time, getting a few results was the only way really.
“When I looked at the first five games, we’ve got three of the top six. We have got most of the top six in the first nine so I knew it was going to be difficult.
“Can we go and get a couple more results? That’s got to be the aim and the only thing I’m really focused on and concentrating on because that’s the only thing I can affect.
“The only thing I can affect is on the training ground and making sure that they’re ready and capable and, of course, the result at Tottenham gave everyone a lift.
“We had a good week. We played very well against Leicester – lost on penalties – and did OK against Watford. It’s a big occasion at the weekend coming up but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it.
“I only want what’s best for the club. I want to try and take the club forward and the sickness in me has enjoyed it. I’ve enjoyed the stick and I’ve enjoyed the challenge. The more it piles on, the more I seem to enjoy. I hope it wanes a little bit but, in time, a few results will help.”
Newcastle return to domestic action away to Liverpool on Saturday.