Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughFootball Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough » Aston Villa legend Nigel Spink gives Steve Bruce his full backing for Premier League promotion Aston Villa legend Nigel Spink gives Steve Bruce his full backing for Premier League promotion – Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

Aston Villa legend Nigel Spink gives Steve Bruce his full backing for Premier League promotion

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Steve Bruce received the unqualified backing of Aston Villa legend Nigel Spink as the man to get the club back into the Premier League.

A member of the Aston Villa side which won the 1982 European Club Champions Cup final, Spink isn’t convinced that his former club will qualify via the automatic promotion places.

Second-placed Cardiff City are seven points clear of Villa and firmly in control of the final promotion place. Despite some tricky fixtures ahead, including a meeting with leaders Wolverhampton Wanderers next week, the Bluebirds are expected to take the final automatic promotion place.

Not only that, Villa need Fulham in third to slip-up as well.

In Spink’s view, Villa will benefit from the situation resolving itself quickly. “If it is to be the play-offs,” he said. “In a way it would be better to find out sooner rather than later.”

Mile Jedinak for Aston Villa

Mile Jedinak for Aston Villa

The disappointment of missing out on the final place is tough to cope with, he told the Express and Star. “I always feel it is difficult for teams who get close and miss out on the final game to refocus.”

Not that Spink expects Bruce or the squad to give up. “Steve will still believe they can do it until it is no longer mathematically possible,” the former Villa goalkeeper said.

Bruce has been through the playoffs before, winning the final twice, once with Birmingham City in 2002 and then with Hull City in 2016.

Spink, who worked with the Villa boss as a goalkeeping coach when he was in charge at Birmingham City, Wigan Athletic, and Sunderland, believes the pressure of the promotion race won’t undermine Bruce.

“Steve knows what the play-offs are all about and how to handle them,” he said. “There is definitely a way to approach them and he knows how to prepare,” he declared, before adding, “he is the best manager you could ask for in that situation.”

Neil Warnock may disagree about that as he heads toward another promotion to the Premier League. Even so, Aston Villa are in good hands and few around the B6 postcode will argue with Spink’s view.

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