West Bromwich Albion and Southampton have shown an interest in Jeff Hendrick but the former Burnley midfielder is expected to join Newcastle United instead, according to 90Min.
While Steve Bruce might not posses the pulling power of Max Allegri or Mauricio Pochettino – two mangers who had been tipped to take his job at St James’ Park – the Magpies boss deserves plenty of credit as an Ireland international prepares to travel to Tyneside.
According to reports, Bruce has played a major role in convincing Hendrick to turn down approaches from up to five Premier League rivals.
After his contract at Burnley expired, much to the frustration of Clarets boss Sean Dyche, the former Derby County dynamo has courted the interest of Southampton, Everton, Crystal Palace and a newly-promoted West Brom side.
The Mail reported on Wednesday that Aston Villa were another suitor.
But he is now set to join a Newcastle side who, without a Saudi billionaire bankrolling things, will once again be forced to prioritise freebies and cut-price deals.
Burnley paid a club-record £10.5 million to bring Hendrick to Turf Moor four years ago.
And, while he was hardly one of the flashiest midfielders around, the Dublin-born 28-year-old played a key role in establishing the Clarets in the top-flight.
His tremendous work-rate, not to mention an ability to play on the right or through the middle, understandably made him a target for a host of managers looking for bargain signings in an era of budget cuts and slashed funds.