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Aston Villa's promotion hopes lie comfortably on the shoulders of Conor Hourihane

Aston Villa are looking likely to be in the promotion hunt at the end of the season after a good run of form under the guidance of Dean Smith. The new manager has helped Villa turnaround their fortunes and fans feel that the club are now on the cusp of breaking into the playoffs.

However, if they do so, it will largely be down to a host of Steve Bruce recruits – especially one midfield man.

Whilst Aston Villa fans do not like a lot of what Steve Bruce did at the club, signing Conor Hourihane will not be one of those issues.

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 25 : Conor Hourihane of Aston Villa in action during during a training session at the club’s training ground at Bodymoor Heath on October 25, 2018 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Neville Williams/Aston Villa FC via Getty Images)

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Bruce knew the Irishman from his time as a young player at Sunderland and in January 2017 snapped him up for Aston Villa. According to The Mirror, he cost a fee in the region of £3 million.

He has since gone on to become a regular starter at Villa Park and in recent weeks has been key to the club’s success.

He scored the winning goal against Swansea City yesterday. It takes his tally for the season to five goals and six assists for the Midlands club.

If Aston Villa are to push on and make the playoffs then Hourihane will undoubtedly be key. At just £3 million, this Bruce bargain could prove to be a hero this term.

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