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Wednesday, 8 May, 2002, 15:17 GMT 16:17 UK
Bruce feels true Blue
Bruce faces old club Norwich for a Premiership place
Bruce faces old club Norwich for a Premiership place
Steve Bruce admits he is more at home with Birmingham City than any other club in his managerial career.

The former Manchester United defender arrived at St Andrews at the turn of the year after controversially quitting Crystal Palace.

He spent just half a season at Selhurst Park after spells in charge of Sheffield United, Huddersfield and briefly Wigan.


If I get loyalty off people there is no-one more loyal than I am
Blues boss Steve Bruce
However, Bruce feels an affinity with Birmingham, the club he served as a player after leaving Old Trafford.

"For the first time in my managerial career I'm comfortable," he said, ahead of the Nationwide First Division play-off final against Norwich on Sunday.

"I am comfortable with the people I work for. They let me get on and do my job. I am at ease and that helps enormously.

"The people here waited patiently and had to pay a lot of money, with my situation being dragged through the High Court.

"But it's not the time to be critical. Maybe I will do so in the future.

"But it was a difficult time for my family and the kids took stick at school, but that's all behind me now.

"My reputation took a battering and everything I worked for over the last 25 to 30 years went down the pan.

"Thankfully the people who know me and are close to me know what I am like."

Bruce started his playing career at Gillingham before moving to Norwich, Man Utd, Birmingham, and finally finishing as player-boss at Sheffield United.

"If you look at my playing record I had five clubs in 20 years," Bruce added.

"Loyalty is a two-way thing. If I get loyalty off people there is no-one more loyal than I am."

Birmingham go into the showdown at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium on the back of an unbeaten run stretching back over 13 games.

Bruce said: "I think the whole of football wonders how big Birmingham could be.

"I am intrigued as well as this club has an unbelievable fan base considering they've had nothing to shout about for 100 years."

 VOTE RESULTS
Who will reach the Premiership?

Birmingham
 65.09% 

Norwich
 34.90% 

5697 Votes Cast

Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

Division One

Division Two

Division Three

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