Steve Bruce admits Joe Willock's exploits have been a "double-edged sword" as he looks to test Arsenal's resolve

Joe Willock Credit: PA

Newcastle head coach Steve Bruce has vowed to test Arsenal's resolve to hang on to midfielder Joe Willock after admitting his exploits at St James' Park have served as a "double-edged sword".

The 21-year-old midfielder became the youngest man to score in six consecutive Premier League games in midweek to further enhance his loan spell on Tyneside, although Gunners boss Mikel Arteta indicated on Friday morning that the Magpies' hopes of securing his services on a longer-term basis would be in vain.

However, Bruce said: "We always said that it was a double-edged sword, and we have to respect that he is Arsenal's player.

"We'll see over the summer whether we can test their resolve, but as I said from day one, I'd like to thank Mikel and Steve Round and the football side of it because they were instrumental in getting me him and letting us borrow him for a few months.

"Let's see. As I've said many, many times now, I've got total respect. Let's not disrespect Arsenal, he is their player."

Newcastle's Head Coach was asked on Friday how much of a disappointment it would be if he wasn't able to bring Willock back to Tyneside next season.