By support

14th Jan, 2017 | 8:39pm

Steve Bruce makes honest admission about Aston Villa, fans will be worried

By Will Butcher

Steve Bruce believes Aston Villa are “thin” in the striker department and added “we haven’t got any real penetration or creativity in the final third” as he watched his side lose to Midlands rivals Wolves 1-0 at Molineux.

Bruce’s side definitely lacked an attacking punch against Paul Lambert’s side, as Joe Mason secured all three points with an early winner after a fumble by new signing Sam Johnstone.

Speaking to Sky Sports 1’s live coverage of the match after the game, Bruce was blunt and honest, and revealed that his side would be looking to solve that area but told fans not to expect an influx of new signings.

“We’re short in the final third,” Bruce said. “We need to improve all over the pitch, we huffed and puffed all match but we weren’t good enough.

“We haven’t got any real penetration or creativity in the final third, we have a big job on our hands. If there are people out there that can help us in January then great. But I won’t just bring in an influx of players.”

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This won’t be what fans will be wanting to hear as the club prepares for a second-half push to reel back in the clubs in the play-off spots.

Villa started with Ross McCormack and Gabby Agbonlahor up front against Wolves, as Jordan Ayew and Jonathan Kodjia are currently away at the African Cup of Nations.

Also available to Bruce is youngster Rushian Hepburn-Murphy who is expected to be given a chance in the near future, while ostracised target man Libor Kozak is looking for a way out.

With half of the January transfer window already up, Bruce will have to move quickly if he is to sign a new striker.

Football Insider verdict: 

Bruce must look to sign a striker who can provide goals as well as creativity. There is no doubt that either McCormack or Agbonlahor have the ability to find the back of the net, but they were given little service throughout the match and an attacking midfielder could be targeted instead of a striker to get the best out of the two forwards. Signing someone who can connect the midfield and attack and orchestrate Villa’s attacking moves could prove crucial as Bruce looks to maintain his reputation as a promotion expert by returning Villa to the Premier League at the first attempt.

In other Aston Villa transfer news, this 21-year-old is set to have a medical after agreeing terms.