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21st Jan 2017

Steve Bruce drives to player’s house to confront him after he uses bizarre excuse to miss training

"Not on my watch"

Robert Redmond

Steve Bruce has had enough of Ross McCormack.

Bruce is so sick of the striker and his excuses for missing training that he drove over to his house to confront him earlier this week, according to The Mirror.

McCormack, who signed for the Championship side from Fulham for £12m last summer, phoned Bruce to tell him he couldn’t make training because the electric gates outside his house had broken.

The Villa manager asked his player to jump over the gate and get a taxi to training.

McCormack, who had reportedly already called-in sick twice already this season, said he would wait for the gates to be fixed and then come to the club’s training ground.

Bruce wasn’t having any of that though.

The former Manchester United captain reportedly drove over McCormack’s house and confronted him on his apparent lack of professionalism. Bruce is said to have climbed over the gate, before tearing strips off the 30-year-old striker.

He was still fuming about the incident following Villa’s 2-2 draw with Preston North End on Saturday. The Scottish international was excluded from Villa’s squad for the game.

“In my opinion, he’s not fit enough to play unless his attitude and record of missing training improves,” Bruce said about McCormack, who has scored two goals in 17 appearances this season.

“If he keeps missing training like he does – then that will be the situation. He has just not turned off. The latest excuse was that his gates had stuck but he couldn’t jump over a fence that was four feet six inches high.

“There has been too much indiscipline at this club for way too long.

“Not in 20 years of management have I gone down this road of publicly shaming a player but I have to make a stand because I won’t put up with it. Not on my watch.

“I ask only one thing. When I tell them they are in, everyone else is in. How can I pick him when he doesn’t want to come training? It’s happened more than once. Everyone can have an excuse for one occasion but when it is more than that I will not accept it.”

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