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Press Conference hot topics: Bruce on Kodjia, Ipswich Town, Dr Tony and his request from Prince William

Injury update: Kodjia, Terry, Hogan If Villa were...a Formula 1 team
Press Conference hot topics: Bruce on Kodjia, Ipswich Town, Dr Tony and his request from Prince William

Steve Bruce spoke to the media ahead of the Ipswich clash this weekend.

His views in full are below. 

On the better start after the international break...

We played very well at QPR and the other night we didn't play as well.

But we found a way to win and that's important too. 

Sometimes you don't play as well as you'd like but being able to win is a good trait to have.

That was the case the other night and I was comfortable with us not reaching the heights of the QPR match.

We were still comfortable. The only save Sam Johnstone made was their one shot on target.

We got through it and it's another tough game tomorrow now.

On winning against Sunderland despite not matching the display of the previous game...

Ideally, you always want to play the way we did against QPR.

But that doesn't happen, unfortunately. That's football. That's the Championship.

Teams go up and down with their form very quickly so it's important that we've found a resilience.

Sometimes you've just got to do the basics and now we face another tough challenge against Ipswich, where we know what to expect.

It's our third game in a week and our last before December begins, which is going to be very important.

BruceSunderlandVerdict

On the chance to make it three wins in a row on Saturday...

If you're going to be there or thereabouts at the end of the season you've got to be putting runs together.

Overall I've been delighted with our form, other than in the first two weeks of the season.

We had two disappointing results at Reading and Cardiff, but since then there's been a resilience about us and results wise it's been very good.

We're making progress but there's still a long way to go.

We're where we want to be.

On the new-look defence and keeping the shirt...

We know what a big difference John Terry made and losing him was a big blow.

But the reason we brought in Chris Samba was exactly for this situation we find ourselves in.

That's the beauty of having a squad. I keep saying to them the shirt stays with people if they're playing well.

There's times when I'm thinking, 'Do I change it? Do I freshen it up?'

But I'd have been disappointed as a player if I played at QPR and then hadn't been picked for Sunderland. 

GrealishSunderland

On the progress of players returning from injury...

People like Jack Grealish and Henri Lansbury have come back and they've had to wait, but they'll have a part to play and will get their chance.

They've been brilliant coming back after nasty injuries – especially Jack's, which was a freak one.

He gave a cameo performance that showed what we've been missing the other day.

He was even going into sliding tackles, which was nice to see.

His big part of the season could be just upon us, and it's the same with Lansbury.

Read more: Injury update – Kodjia, Terry and Hogan

On filling the Jonathan Kodjia void...

Hopefully we manage to cope until January, and then we'll see if we can do something to try and help the squad.

We won't have millions to spend because of Financial Fair Play.

But three players in particular this year, Robert Snodgrass, Josh Onomah and Sam Johnstone, have all come on loan.

So you don't have to spend millions all the time. 

It's more difficult to find loan players, of course, but that's where we are.

On the challenge of Ipswich Town...

We know what to expect from a Mick McCarthy team – they've made a very good start.

He's been there five years or so now and in my opinion he's very underrated. 

He's a very capable, good manager who's been around the block.

You always know what you're going to get when you face his sides – they'll be up and at you.

They'll never give anything up, just like Mick himself. They'll mirror him.

DrTonyWeb

On making it three wins out of three for Dr Tony's visit...

The owner is right behind everything and leads from the front.

It'll be great if we can make it three out of three for him.

I'm sure that would round his week off very well.

BrucewithWilliamMain

On meeting Prince William and Catherine at Villa Park earlier this week...

Sometimes in your job you get these perks. They were a delight. 

William is a big Villa fan and knew a lot.

He was pleading with me to get Sam Johnstone tied up and make his deal permanent.

We're pretty fortunate to have him as one of our big supporters. 

It's quite remarkable really. It was a very enjoyable day, I have to say.

Dan Connor
By @danconnor 24th November 2017