After a succession of managers who have been unsuccessful, Dr. Tony Xia will be hoping to appoint a man who can lead the club out of the Championship and bring back the glory days to Villa Park.
Since the days of Martin O’Neill, all has not seemed well. Managers have come and gone but none have achieved any success. Tim Sherwood had a brief period of positivity when his team reached the FA Cup final but, all in all, it has been a torrid time for the club and the men in charge of it.
From the outside looking in, it seems that the club is lacking leadership. Despite the efforts made in the summer to add leaders to the playing staff in the form of Mile Jedinak, Ross McCormack and club captain Tommy Elphick, there still seems to be a poisonous fog hanging low over the Villa changing room.
With the club hovering just two points above the Championship drop zone, this next managerial appointment needs to be the right one or the club may just follow the likes of Norwich City and Wolverhampton Wanderers in suffering a double relegation.
Now is the time to turn to a manager from the same mould as O’Neill.
Steve Bruce may not be the kind of manager who prowls the edge of his technical area, banging his seat and shouting at the fourth official. He is calmer and more collected than O’Neill but they are both cut from the same cloth.
Both are no-nonsense characters who will not let players with attitude rule the roost and who also have the ability to put their arms around players and really get the best out of them.
A lot is made of Bruce’s inability to make a side kick on once it has reached the Premier League and become established as a mid-table side. Whether that is true or not, the Villans are currently a million miles away a mid-table Premier League position and Bruce’s proven track record of getting sides promoted from the Championship is as far as Xia and his board really needs to look.
His sides are set up in formation that suit them that are primarily designed to ensure that they are not losing and building upon that, which would be a bonus compared to the few weeks under Roberto Di Matteo. His brand of football isn’t like Tony Pulis’ at West Bromwich Albion: Bruce knows how to gain results. Watching the Villans winning games is not something I would ever describe as ‘boring’.
Given Bruce’s ability, his name really should be the first on any list that Xia and Wyness draw up.