By Amir Mir
Martin O’Neill has stated that he originally thought that Aston Villa would finish in the play-off places under manager Steve Bruce.
Promotion expert Bruce took charge of the Midlands club in mid-October replacing the sacked Roberto di Matteo in the Villa Park dugout.
After a positive start to his reign, Bruce has managed to pick up only two points in the Championship since December 29.
As a result, Villa have fallen down the table at an alarming rate as their promotion chances have gone up in smoke as they now look over their shoulders at a possible relegation scrap.
TalkSport pundit O’Neill delivered his verdict on Bruce and had this message for the Villa Park faithful regarding their under-fire manager.
“Villa can’t buy a win. I thought that when Steve went in there, first of all, they were going to make the play offs,” O’Neill told talkSport, as quoted by the Birmingham Mail. “That looks unlikely now, but give him time and let him sort things out and give him next season,”
Republic of Ireland manager O’Neill managed Villa for a five year period, before leaving his post in 2010 after guiding the club to three consecutive top-six finishes in the Premier League.
Since then, the former European champions have been on the decline, going from Champions League chasers to a possible relegation scrap in the second tier within the space of seven years.
Seven managers have gone and come through the doors since O’Neill left the club with Bruce now the man at the helm.
He has the task of guiding the club back to the top tier under the club’s recently new ownership after the departure of the much-criticised Randy Lerner last June.
In other Aston Villa news, Garry Thompson has delivered a scathing attack on the players for their treatment of Scott Hogan.