Savage blasts Bruce
By Tom Adams
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Blackburn star Robbie Savage has escalated his feud with Steve Bruce.Blackburn star Robbie Savage has escalated his feud with Birmingham boss Steve Bruce by boasting that Blues have not been able to replace him since his January transfer.
His switch to Rovers was an intensely acrimonious affair, and as a result Savage was denied the chance to turn out against his former side when the two met at St Andrews in April.
Savage deeply angered Bruce with his actions in engineering a transfer to Ewood Park, and has also become embroiled in a row over his international future with new Wales boss John Toshack.
The controversial midfielder has now accused Birmingham of fabricating security concerns in a bid to prevent him appearing in the tie, and taunted Bruce by saying he was irreplaceable.
"Steve Bruce and the club said it was for security reasons but that's rubbish," Savage told the Daily Star.
"They just didn't want me going back and beating them.
"How can they plead security when Wayne Rooney went back to Everton and Harry Redknapp to Portsmouth - that doesn't make sense.
"They haven't properly replaced me and I'm not sure they ever will.
"I was a great player for that club for two years."
When Savage made his eagerness to move clear, Bruce responded by dumping him into the Birmingham reserves in what was a traumatic experience for the 30-year-old.
Savage has now attacked his former boss for what he perceives to be a deliberate persecution, and declared that new manager Mark Hughes was the inspiration for his move to Ewood Park.
He also aimed a personal broadside at Bruce by insisting that Hughes had now supplanted him as the natural heir to Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United.
"I'm not sure I'll ever forgive Steve Bruce for that," Savage continued.
"I still believe the match was organised especially for my humiliation, it was the worst moment of the most terrible season of my life.
"Mark Hughes has no problems with me at all - the man's perfect for me.
"It was all about Mark Hughes, had he been there and wanted me when contract talks started I'd have left, but that wasn't the case, he was manager of Wales.
"But when he left to manage Rovers and came in for me that was it - I wanted to play for him.
"He has a long way to go with Rovers but when the time comes for Sir Alex Ferguson to retire he's the natural choice as the next Manchester United manager.
"I guess people will be putting Steve Bruce in for the job but for me Mark's the man.
"He took this club from a position of real peril to eight points clear of relegation."Meanwhile Blackburn are reportedly preparing a move for Arsenal reserve keeper Stuart Taylor as they look to bolster their goalkeeping options behind current number one Brad Friedel.
The 24-year-old had been seen as a long-term replacement for David Seaman but has failed to force himself into contention at Highbury despite the faltering form of both Manuel Almunia and Jens Lehmann.