By Amir Mir

Steve Bruce has confirmed that Christopher Samba is training with Aston Villa ahead of a potential contract with the club.

Bruce revealed that the former Premier League centre-back has been training with the Championship side for a week.

The 32-year-old is currently a free-agent and was recently on trial at Crystal Palace where his former boss Sam Allardyce decided against offering him a deal.

Villa are struggling in the second tier of English football where they are on a five-match losing streak added by the fact that they have not kept a clean sheet since December.

Ahead of Villa’s home clash against promotion-chasing Derby County on Saturday afternoon, this is what Bruce had to say about Samba.

Subscribe to Football Insider TV now

“He wanted to come and train,” said Bruce, as posted by the club’s official Facebook Page. “I spoke to Sam Allardyce about him who had him at Blackburn and he was down in London [Crystal Palace] for a while.

“We are delighted that he is here, I think it would be wrong to say it was a trial, he has come in because he wants to stay fit and try and earn a contract with us. He’s been here for the past week.”

It remains to be seen whether Samba would be offered a deal with the club, but Villa have struggled at the back of late and are short of numbers.

Tommy Elphick, James Chester and Nathan Baker are the only senior players who have played regularly under Bruce since his arrival in mid-October.

Wales international Chester has played every minute under Bruce while the other two have chopped and changed as the Midlands club search for a winning formula.

Since December 29, Villa have only recorded two points and have fallen down the table at an alarming rate as they now look over their shoulders at a possible relegation battle.

In other Aston Villa news, Garry Thompson has launched a scathing attack on the players for their treatment of Scott Hogan.

We’ve launched a << BREAKING NEWS FEED>> exclusively for your club. ‘Like Us’ on Facebook by clicking here if you want 24/7 updates on all Aston Villa breaking news.