By Amir Mir

Aston Villa have set their sights on Steve Bruce and Lee Johnson as replacements for manager Roberto Di Matteo, according to report.

The Telegraph claimed on Sunday morning that owner Tony Xia is set to wield the axe on Di Matteo in the next 48 hours following the 2-0 defeat to Preston, which leaves them two points above the relegation zone.

Now, The Sun have claimed the Midlands club have two stand-out candidates in their sights, with former Hull City manager Bruce and current Bristol City boss Johnson on their radar.

Bruce, 55, left Hull in the summer after guiding them to the Premier League via the play-offs last season.

Robins manager Johnson has guided his club to fifth in the Championship, with 20 points from their opening eleven games.

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Bruce is a free agent and this, along with his experience, is a huge attraction to Villa. The club have also been impressed by Johnson’s work on a limited budget at Ashton Gate.

Di Matteo has had a disastrous spell since taking over Villa Park in the summer, with the former Chelsea boss picking up just one win in 12 games in all competitions, with seven draws and three losses.

During this five month period the former Champions League winning manager saw his club knocked out of the EFL Cup by fourth-tier outfit Luton town.

In other Aston Villa news, supporters react on Twitter to Di Matteo reportedly set to face the axe by Monday night.