Police searching for fan who hurled cabbage at Villa manager Bruce

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Aston Villa drew Championship basement-dwellers Preston North End in a wild match that featured a blown 2-0 lead, a goal for either side after the 86th minute, and a 97th-minute missed penalty that would have given the home side a last-gasp win.

Yet somehow, after all was said and done, a head of lettuce was the headline story from Villa Park.

Police are teaming up with the club to pinpoint the fan who threw a cabbage at Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce in the moments before the match started. “A cabbage was thrown at the dugout from the stand. We are working with the club to identify the person,” said the West Midlands police in a statement.

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“To say it’s disappointing is an understatement for a club like this,” said Bruce in his post-match press conference. “Unfortunately, it sums up the society we are in at the moment. There’s no respect for anyone.”

The cabbage did not make contact with its intended target. It’s unclear how the vegetable made its way past security and into the stadium.

Villa has won just one of its last 10 league matches, falling to 12th in the table. Fans came into the season hoping to challenge for promotion after just missing out to Fulham via the playoff final. Bruce has faced plenty of backlash from fans, including this past weekend when visiting fans chanted “you don’t know what you’re doing” as the final minutes ticked away on a road draw at Bristol City.