Bumper Saturday post: Wolves, the Chart, Gabby and Bruce

I head off with the blog post about Steve Bruce getting the job because I wrote the week before last that of all the managers mentioned, he was the logical choice. I also wrote in May that if you looked at Bruce and Di Matteo you had to pick Bruce. What I'm saying is that it wasn't a surprise that Bruce got the job, so I didn't need to write about it and tell you what you already knew.

But I will write about Gabby. Six months ago, Gabby was thought of as a cancer at this Club. And he is. He was out smoking, drinking, paying for sex with women and a lot more probably. He was doing all this while the Club was fighting to stay in the Premier League. And regardless of what he says, he doesn't really care.

You can tell what a man really cares about by his actions. Were those actions from the man that really cares or has just made so much money that he's better and bigger?

I wrote in the summer that Richards and Gabby had to go or things wouldn't get better. I also wrote that with Di Matteo we'd not get promoted. I'm not saying that these two things are absolutely spot on, but Gabby is that guy in the office or on site that is always having a little dig at people, you know, the one that has been there for years and just does enough to get by. A goal every four games. There are midfielders that do better.

But I don't think Steve Bruce will have any of it. I think Steve Bruce will know this because Steve Bruce is a proper football man and he will know the damage that a player like Gabby can cause.

The chart

And I'm bringing up the chart for a good reason. You see, Steve Bruce was the right choice in May because Steve Bruce probably wouldn't have brought in as many players and he would have had time to get the necessary points to win us promotion. So many games in, it's going to need something quite spectacular based on his record to get us promoted and because of this, if it doesn't happen, it really isn't him to blame.

I read a tweet earlier, so it may be wrong, that Steve Bruce has averaged 1.8 points per game in the Championship and if he brings that to Aston Villa, we'll possibly end up in the play-offs. If it takes him a little time to get that, then we likely wont. Is it his fault that he is joining the Club at a time when there are so many new players, players that are still at the Club that need to be sacked and when we're low on confidence?

It isn't his fault, but because of where he once managed, he'll be blamed a lot sooner that others would. The truth is, we're in the Championship for one reason and if we stay here it's because of another. Neither have anything to do with Steve Bruce but Steve Bruce remains the best option to get us promoted. And with a glint, I still do believe it's possible this season, because we have possibly the best Championship squad there is. And I do mean automatically.


And what a match to start your career with Aston Villa. A local derby at home and with the best Championship squad. This is all set up for Bruce to win so many over.

And the truth is, while I've watched a lot of matches with Bruce as the opposition manager, I don't really know that much about him but what I think I know, I hope is true. The impression I have is that he gets his players up for the game and he gets them playing a certain way.

And if he can get our players up for every match and because we have possibly the best Championship squad in the League, you've got to believe that we should start to win soon. I hope I am right about what I think about Bruce, but even if I'm not, he's proven in this League so I am confident it will start to come right. And today would be a good time for that to start happening. For everyone.

Stats from the BBC

  • Aston Villa have won nine and lost just one of their last 14 league games against Wolves.
  • Wolves are unbeaten in their last three at Villa Park, winning one and drawing two.
  • Villa have picked up more cards than any other Championship team this season (36 yellows).
  • Wolves have lost their last two matches. They have not suffered three defeats in a row since February 2016.
  • Villa have won just one of their opening 11 games for the second season in a row and only the fourth time in their history.

And on that, I know it's proper early, but I have to get up, eat and start with my day. I'll be back an hour before kick off and I have a good feeling today, about Bruce and about the next few months.

This is Gabby