Steve Bruce is right man for Aston Villa, says Dean Saunders
Last Updated: 17/02/17 5:09pm
Steve Bruce is the right man to lead Aston Villa forward despite their nightmare run of form, according to Dean Saunders.
Villa have failed to win any of their last nine games in all competitions and find themselves 16th in the Sky Bet Championship ahead of their match against Newcastle on Monday, live on Sky Sports.
Saunders, who made 115 Premier League appearances for Villa, admitted to Sky Sports News HQ that he was shocked by the club's recent slump, but insists Bruce would turn it around.
Get a Sky Sports Day Pass
Grab a NOW TV Sky Sports Day Pass and watch Newcastle v Aston Villa, all for just £6.99. No contract
"I don't know where it has come from, they've hit a terrible run of form," he said. "Someone asked me the other day if [Bruce] was the right man for the job, and I said he was.
"It's because of the way he sets his teams up. I've played under him and he sets the back four up to be a solid unit and then buys strikers who nick games for him.
"It's alright setting the team up like that but there don't seem to be enough players in front of the back four who can smell danger at the moment.
"It will take a while for him to get the whole thing right."
Saunders was joined on Sky Sports News HQ by Danny Higginbotham, who agreed Villa were lacking balance in their side and it was an issue Bruce needed to address.
"The problem is, when he came into the job, Villa were defensively sound and scoring goals was the main issue for them," Saunders added.
"What he's done is gone out in January and got Henri Lansbury and Conor Hourihane, two decent goalscorers in the Championship, but the problem with those two players is their eyes are always going forward.
"They are missing that [Mile] Jedinak type player. What you find is the back four is there, the midfield is there, but there's no one in between. It leaves them open to the counter-attack.
"For Bruce it's difficult because he's come in and seen that the problem is [scoring goals], but he's tried to change that by bringing more match winners and goal scorers onto the pitch, and for whatever reason they've started conceding more goals."