[Here, we will be bringing you a light-hearted, and at times, serious look at life under Steve Bruce at Aston Villa. Expect rants, poor humour & the article being ‘there or thereabouts’ to your liking!]
There were chants of ‘We want Bruce out’ coming from the away end during the second-half at Ashton Gate. Massive signs that the Villa Park faithful have now become sick and tired of Bruce’s tactics and incompetence.
Villa started the game with all three wingers on the bench. But none on the pitch. Both their strikers in the starting XI. But none on the bench. Yet finished the game with both their strikers on the bench. And two wingers on the pitch. Read again because trust me, you won’t get it the first time. Nor the second. They call Steve Bruce a ‘Promotion expert’, you know!
During his post-match interview, Bruce stated that there will always be a section of the fanbase that he will never please.
Well, when you are sitting in 15th place, with one of the most expensive Championship squads ever assembled and you are two years into the job. What do you seriously expect? Some flowers? Fans to compare you to Pep Guardiola? A box of chocolates? To be fair, Bruce would love the latter.
More players out of position
It has become the norm of the season for Bruce to play players out of their natural positions. Mile Jedinak was once again playing at CB, Tuanzebe was at RB and Alan Hutton was operating at LB. Now, star man Jack Grealish has been shifted out wide whilst striker Jonathan Kodjia is playing on the other flank. That means, in all competitions, Bruce has played eight players out of their natural positions. If truth be told, the biggest person playing out of their position is Bruce, who should be at home rather than on the touchline.
The Titanic wasn’t all bad, was it?!
After ten league games, Villa have recorded three wins and suffered two defeats. Furthermore, they have conceded 15 goals with only one clean sheet to their name. Added with that, they have won only one of their previous eight matches leaving them in the bottom half of the Championship. What angle do you think Brucie is going to take? ‘We have suffered only two defeats this season’ or ‘We have one win from eight matches’. You know the answer. However bad the situation, Steve can twist and turn it into something positive. ‘Look, the sinking of the Titanic isn’t something we expected to happen, but at least decades later we got Kate Winslet out of it’.
Roll our sleeves up for the next two games
If you watch or listen to Bruce’s pre and post-match interviews then you will realise that he likes to spout the same crap, week in, week out. From, ‘We’ll be there or thereabouts’ to ‘We’ll roll our sleeves up’. Well, if reports are to be true then Steve has two more games to save his job. Villa host bottom-of-the-table Preston North End on Tuesday night followed by a trip to Millwall at the weekend. Drop points or even lose those encounters then it could be the end of the road for the four-time promotion winner. More than likely, Villa will claim all three points against Preston in midweek because of their strong home record. They have lost only six games at Villa Park since their relegation to the Championship in 2016. The game against Millwall could be a different story.