Dr Tony Xia is the new owner of Aston Villa

By Matt Farr

Aston Villa owner Dr Tony Xia has told Ross McCormack to “stand up” and become a “real man”.

McCormack was left out of Aston Villa’s squad to face Preston on Saturday amid talk of a rift between him and manager Steve Bruce.

The 30-year-old missed training last week, claiming the front gates at his house would not open, which left Bruce livid.

The relationship between the pair has been pushed near to breaking point, and it remains to be seen if either party will seek to patch things up in future.

However, with Bruce voicing his frustrations on Saturday, Villa owner Tony Xia has now delivered his own damning verdict of McCormack’s actions.

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In response to fan protests regarding the striker’s controversial actions, Xia responded emphatically on Twitter, suggesting McCormack needed to “Stand up!”

He did though, also admit that there is a lot more than meets the eye in McCormack’s personal life.

He said: “Have talked to Ross. It’s hard to go through the difficult time in personal life but we all have to take whatever to become a real man. Stand up.”

McCormack has also been disciplined for his actions, with Bruce admitting that he was not going to be picked until his attitude towards training and the club improves.

The Scotland international has not been in the best of form since arriving at Villa Park for £12million in the summer, netting only three goals from 22 appearances in all competitions.

The Sun claim that Fulham are looking to bring McCormack back to Craven Cottage this month, and the latest events at Villa Park could well work in their favour.

In other Aston Villa news, Villa face competition for the signature of this League One ace.

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