Steve Bruce 'asks Sheffield Wednesday' for permission to speak to Newcastle United

Steve Bruce has reportedly asked Sheffield Wednesday for permission to speak to Newcastle United about becoming the club’s new manager.

Bruce, has emerged as a surprise contender to succeed Rafa Benitez after Sam Allardyce reportedly turned down the job.

The 58-year-old, who was born near Newcastle and is a lifelong supporter of the club, has found himself installed as the bookmakers’ favourite – some even suspended betting – to replace Benitez over the past 48 hours.

The Star revealed yesterday that Sheffield Wednesday have yet to receive a formal approach from Newcastle United to speak to Bruce.

Owls Manager Steve Bruce......Pic Steve Ellis

However, according to The Times’ Paul Joyce, Bruce has now asked Sheffield Wednesday for permission to talk to Newcastle about becoming the new manager.

The Times have reported that Bruce asked Dejphon Chansiri, the Wednesday chairman and owner, to be allowed to discuss the vacant role at the club.

However, the Owls are reluctant to grant him his wish.

The Magpies are looking to make a quick appointment before they head off to China for the Premier League Asia Trophy on Saturday. Several potential candidates, including Jose Mourinho, Arsene Wenger, Patrick Vieira and Steven Gerrard, have ruled themselves out of contention.

When asked about the speculation following the club's 2-0 practice match victory over Shrewsbury Town on Tuesday evening, the former Sunderland chief played down the talk.

Speaking exclusively to The Star, he said: “God only knows what happened on Tuesday afternoon. There seemed to be an upsurge [in the betting] from somewhere.

“John Terry was favourite yesterday. It was Mikel Arteta the day before, so who knows?

“As far as I am concerned, I am here, I am going home tomorrow and looking forward to walking the dog.”