Bruce had Hayden during his younger years, when on a loan spell at Hull City, and he would be able to tell Villa all about the midfielder’s quality.
“I've already been on to Arsenal because I'd love to make it permanent if I could,” Bruce said back in 2016, when in charge at Hull.
"I'd make it permanent tomorrow if that was possible. I desperately want to hang on to him. In an ideal world he'd want to be playing every week but he's started last weekend and again.
"He's a very good young player, who's progressing all the time."
Hayden wants out at Newcastle United, and Villa are now prepared to offer him an escape route.
If Villa can complete a deal it is sure to be a transfer that Bruce looks on at with envy.
Bruce left Villa back in October, and Dean Smith is trying to make amendments to his squad.
Smith appears to feel that another central midfielder could be required if Villa are to be promoted.
The claret and blues are currently in 10th place in the Championship table, five points away from the play off spots.