September 23, 2021, 5:19

Liam Ridgewell warns Steve Bruce to expect hostile reception at Birmingham

Liam Ridgewell warns Steve Bruce to expect hostile reception at Birmingham

Liam Ridgewell has warned Aston Villa boss Steve Bruce to expect a hostile reception at Birmingham City

Liam Ridgewell expects Steve Bruce to receive a frosty reception from Birmingham supporters when Aston Villa travel to face the Blues in the second city derby this Sunday, live on Sky Sports Football.

Former Birmingham defender Bruce enjoyed six years in charge of the Blues and twice guided the club to promotion to the Premier League.

However, after leaving in controversial circumstances in 2007, Bruce went on to manage Wigan, Sunderland and Hull before eventually joining Birmingham’s cross-city rivals Villa in 2016.

Ridgewell, who himself has enjoyed spells at both clubs in Birmingham, has warned Bruce to expect a hostile reception at St Andrew’s after switching allegiances.

When asked whether he would like to be Bruce’s position, Ridgewell replied: “I don’t know about that! I think being a player is not too bad because you’re further away from the fans on the pitch.

“He’s closer to the dugout and the touchline so I’m sure he’ll get a little bit of stick, but he’s used to it and I’m sure he’ll take it in his stride that’s for sure.”

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Portland Timbers captain Ridgewell began his career at Villa before moving across the city to join the Blues in 2007 -becoming the first player to transfer between the two clubs since Des Bremner in 1984.

The 33-year-old admits he has mixed memories of the Second City derby, having scored an own goal for Birmingham in 2007, but insists the fixture is still one of the biggest in English football.

“[I’ve] some big memories playing for both teams, obviously got lots of stick from both sides,” Ridgewell told Sky Sports News.

“I’m looking forward to catching the game, it’s always a special game to watch and I miss playing in those games.

“My memories are the own goal I got for Birmingham, that’s just part and parcel of the game. I’m looking forward to the game and hopefully it’ll be a good game of football.”


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