By Amir Mir

Aaron Tshibola believes Aston Villa have made “massive improvements” despite their shocking start to the league campaign.

The Midlands club are 20th in the second-tier, with 11 points from 12 games, following their relegation from the Premier League last season.

Midfielder Tshibola was one of nine summer signings by Villa, following his £5 million transfer from Championship rivals Reading.

The 21-year-old was purchased to help add quality to an extremely poor Villa outfit from the last campaign.

As the youngster gears up for a return to the Madejski stadium on Tuesday night, he provided an unexpectedly confident assessment of his side this season, despite the appointment of a new manager 11 games into the Championship season.

“Every day we’re learning more about each other,” said Tshibola, as quoted by the Birmingham Mail. “As a group and individually we’re learning on the pitch and off the pitch.

“It’s been a massive transition from last season but we’ve made massive improvements in every way.

“We can still make more improvements but that won’t happen overnight. Hopefully we can gel more and then look to have some success.”

Tshibola’s assessment that Villa have made big strides will astound fans given that the club have won just a single match all season.

Former Hull City and Birmingham City boss Bruce replaced Roberto Di Matteo as manager, after the Italian was axed after 124 days in charge.

Tshibola was purchased by the club’s previous manager and started the first game of Bruce’s opening match. Villa registered a 1-1 draw against Midlands rivals Wolves on Saturday evening.

Tshibola has made seven appearances in all competitions this season and is the only central-midfielder in the side to find the net this term.

In other Aston Villa team news, the club’s senior figure has been very critical of player fitness and has aimed a dig at the sides previous manager Roberto Di Matteo.