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‘The crowd got behind them and there’s obviously a different atmosphere’ - Bruce on Town draw

PUBLISHED: 14:09 19 August 2018 | UPDATED: 14:40 19 August 2018

Villa manager Steve Bruce.    Picture: STEVE WALLER     WWW.STEPHENWALLER.COM

Villa manager Steve Bruce. Picture: STEVE WALLER WWW.STEPHENWALLER.COM

© Copyright Stephen Waller

Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce believes his side played better against a full strength Ipswich side than they did after the Blues were reduced to 10 men.

Town manager Paul Hurst smiles during an exchange with Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce late in the game.    Picture: STEVE WALLER     WWW.STEPHENWALLER.COMTown manager Paul Hurst smiles during an exchange with Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce late in the game. Picture: STEVE WALLER WWW.STEPHENWALLER.COM

The visitors dominated possession but weren’t able to make it count after Ipswich loanee Tayo Edun was dismissed with the scored locked at 1-1 entering the final five minutes of the first half.

Bruce also noticed a change in atmosphere at Portman Road, with his side’s last visit coming in April in what was the first home game following the departure of Mick McCarthy. Villa won 4-0 on that occasion.

“We’re frustrated because it was a great opportunity but really when I analyse it we were better against 11 men than we were 10,” Bruce said.

“We didn’t move the ball quickly enough, we didn’t have enough penetration in a wide area quickly enough and found it difficult to basically break them down.

MORE: Northstander: ‘The best atmosphere at Portman Road for some time

“They were always a threat, the crowd got behind them and there’s obviously a different atmosphere.

“A new manager, new players, a lot of them from the lower divisions wanting to make their mark and they did that fantastically well, they were great and the crowd were excellent too to help them.

He added: “We’ve got to be a bit more clinical, we didn’t do enough at the top end of the pitch, we didn’t move the ball quickly enough, we tried to complicate it too often and that gave them hope.

MORE: Andy’s Angles: Five observations following Town’s battling 1-1 draw with Aston Villa

“The more challenges they got in, the more encouragement it gave them. I’ve been there many times, when you’re up against 10, the one thing you have to do is move the ball quicker in forward areas and we didn’t do that well enough.

“I still think we had enough chances to win it. Jack Grealish has had a wonderful one, a wonderful chance and the goalkeeper’s made a great save from Conor Hourihane.”


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