Sad reality: Steve Bruce makes point that may infuriate Aston Villa fans

Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce

Aston Villa's latest defeat was played out in front of fewer thatn 30,000 disillusioned fans.

Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish looks dejected after Barnsley's second goal

As if Aston Villa fans could not feel more cheated after yet another gutless defeat, this time against Barnsley at home on Tuesday night, Steve Bruce has reminded them of a rather infuriating fact; the club’s under-performing players receive some of the highest wages in the division, the Birmingham Mail reports.

Notice we used the word ‘receive’. Not ‘earn’.

Because, on recent performances there is not one single claret and blue clad player worthy of his five-figure weekly sum. Barnsley’s 3-1 midweek triumph means Villa have now lost five or their last six league games. In fact, the last time they won a league fixture Ross McCormack netted the winner.

“The reason why we’ve got one of the biggest wage bills in the division is to deal with the mentality and expectation at this club,” Bruce told the Birmingham Mail.

“That’s why the players get paid more than anyone else in this division to handle the expectation.

Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce

“The crowd have been nothing short of magnificent in the last two games. Some of the stuff has been difficult for them to watch as we have been making mistake after mistake.

“Now is where we must show some balls.”

No one can doubt Bruce’s desire to turn around this seemingly sinking ship but he has been emitting increasingly desperate rallying cries throughout this season-destroying run and, as of yet, his players have not responded with anything like an acceptable performance.

Barnsley’s Tom Bradshaw (R) celebrates after scoring their third goal

Villa spent around £70 million in the summer and have one of the most talented squads in the division but, standing just seven points above the drop zone, quality counts for nothing when character is so clearly lacking.

Such is the dissatisfaction, fewer than 30,000 fans attended Tuesday’s defeat and, as they clambered out of bed this morning ahead of a hard day’s slog, the fact that their under-performing ‘heroes’ continue to increase their bank balance will do little to sate the frustration.

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