Steve Bruce to put aside personal grief ahead of Aston Villa’s derby against Birmingham

“We hope he will be here on Sunday, and part of our job is to help throughout the week”

Aston Villa assistant boss Colin Calderwood

“Stephen Clemence, Gary Walsh, Steve Agnew and myself have to get the team to Sunday, get the group of players there ready, and we hope Steve will be there with us.

“We are in contact with him daily. He will pick the team and we will be ready without his presence this week, but his presence is always there with the players anyway.”

Bruce will return hoping his promotion-chasing Villa side can make it seven wins on the spin.

The match is sold out, with Calderwood adding: “It becomes more and more exciting by the day as we get closer to kick off.

“We’ve got to be right and we’ve got to be ready. The atmosphere should be fantastic.

“Everyone is looking forward to the stadium being full again for a big derby match.”

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