Barely a day goes by without Aston Villa fans taking to social media to discuss the merits of Glenn Whelan.
The experienced midfielder, a £1 million summer signing from Stoke City, has divided fans like few others at Villa Park and still seems to be caught somewhere between a cult figure and a scapegoat.
Steve Bruce, however, is obviously a big fan of the 34-year-old. Whelan has started 26 Championship games this season and was particularly impressive during wins against Sunderland and Sheffield Wednesday, against whom he scored his first goal in seven years.
So Bruce will obviously be very disappointed should Whelan miss out as Aston Villa host local rivals and Championship leaders Wolves on Saturday evening.
The Republic of Ireland international hobbled off on the hour in Tuesday’s 3-0 win at Sunderland but, on the upside, Villa are not short of options to replace him. Mile Jedinak (below) came on at the Stadium of Light, Birkir Bjarnason has excelled in a central role of late while defender Axel Tuanzebe can also fill in.
And it seems that some Villa fans are less than concerned about suggestions that Whelan could be missing in a top of the table clash that could have big ramifications for their hopes of automatic promotion.
Time will tell, however, whether Whelan will be missed.
That’s not exceptionally bad news though! ☺️— TrueVillan (@TrueVillan10) March 6, 2018
How effective was Whelan last time we played wolves? For me Bjarnason and Tuanzebe r needed in there for wolves. Jury not out on Bjarnason at all. He’s been rock solid when we’ve been fortunate enough to play him at CDM and not covering injuries on the left and CAM— TrueVillan (@TrueVillan10) March 6, 2018
Anyone know why Bjarnason doesn't play ahead of Whelan anymore? He's better fit for defensive mid especially in a 4 man midfield #utv— The Religion - AVFC US (@AVFC_US) March 6, 2018
Anyone else gutted Whelan is injured ?— Harry Johnson (@avfc_johnson) March 7, 2018