Aston Villa fans are understandably excited about the appointment of Steve Bruce, but which Villa players can fans expect to see the biggest change in?
The club’s expensive summer signings have yet to prove their price tags, and some of the club’s longer-serving players have been underperforming for quite some time, so who will Bruce get the best out of?
We take a look at three candidates.
Most would argue that James Chester’s most impressive performances came as part of Steve Bruce’s Hull City side, when he last managed in the Premier League.
A solid defender with excellent distribution, Chester has yet to really get going at Villa Park, but Villa fans will be hoping that the instalment of the Welshman’s former boss might just be the key to getting the best out of him.
Anyone who has watched Bruce teams will notice that they often operate around a distribution player, acting as a defensive midfielder, who helps turn defence quickly into attack. At Hull, Bruce utilised Tom Huddlestone in this role, and it is likely that he will look to use a player for this again at Villa.
The most obvious candidate for this role is Ashley Westwood. The midfielder won many Villa fans over during Paul Lambert’s tenure, but has struggled to hit those heights under more recent bosses, such as Remi Garde and Roberto Di Matteo.
Described by many fans as a difficult character to manage, Bruce will face a tough task in getting the most out of the England youngster. However, just as Tim Sherwood managed to show, Grealish is a player with huge talent and, if pulled into line by the right manager, could still end up being a very big player in the future.
Spending a season in the Championship could be huge for Jack Grealish’s development, and Villa fans will be hoping that the former Birmingham City manager will be the one to draw that talent out of him.