Steve Bruce in "poll" position to replace Roberto Di Matteo at Aston Villa

Jack Kitson by Jack Kitson / 06 October 2016, 08:51

Steve Bruce has edged further ahead in the betting to become the Next Aston Villa Manager after his odds were shortened to just 4/9 (Sky Bet). 

Both reports and the betting had previously portrayed a three-horse race between the out-of-work Bruce, and the highly rated duo of Huddersfield manager David Wagner and Brentford boss Dean Smith, who have both enjoyed impressive starts to their respective Championship seasons.

However, Bruce's latest surge in the market, has resulted in Wagner moving out to 6/1, while Smith has drifted to 12/1.

Bruce is also the stand-out name in a poll we ran yesterday (Wednesday), bagging a whopping 67% of the vote ahead of Wagner (23%) and Smith (10%).

Bruce certainly has the experience and the pedigree in the dugout, having had eight different tenures at seven clubs, accumulating over 700 games since beginning his managerial career in 1998.

The 55-year-old, who was interviewed for the England job in the summer, has four promotions to his name, leading both Birmingham and Hull up to the Premier League on two occasions.

At the time of writing it is not known whether Bruce is yet willing to return to club football - he left Hull in July - but while he's many people's No.1 pick, his previous association with Birmingham is putting a number of Villa fans off due to the fierce rivalry between the clubs.

Speaking of local derbies Villa lock horns with Midlands rivals Wolves after the international break (15th October), and by that time they'll have hoped to have a new man in place.

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