By Will Butcher

Midfield dynamo Gary Gardner believes manager Steve Bruce is making Aston Villa unbeatable.

The Villa academy graduate scored for Bruce’s new side in Sunday Midlands derby, with a fantastic looping header that found its way past Birmingham goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak.

Although not able to hold onto a win during the 1-1 draw, Gardner told Aston Villa’s official Twitter account that Bruce is making Gardner and co. feel like they cannot lose.

“It’s been great to work with the gaffer. We feel on confident on the pitch. It feels like we can’t lose. It’s a good feeling to have,” Gardner said.

Since Bruce, 55, took over at Villa Park, the Midlands giants are yet to lose with wins coming against Reading and Fulham and draws against Wolves and Birmingham.

Gardner has featured in the last three of Villa’s games under former Manchester United defender Bruce, starring alongside midfielders Mile Jedinak and Ashley Westwood.

The Solihull-born star has featured in just 10 of Villa’s 18 Championship fixtures this season, starting just seven of those.

Gardner, who has had loan spells with Nottingham Forest, Brighton and Sheffield Wednesday, is expected to start on Saturday as he looks to build on what was his first goal in claret and blue against Birmingham last weekend.

In other Aston Villa news, this is the expected Villa side to face Blackburn on the weekend as Bruce and co. eye a place in the top half of the Championship table.