As a player, Steve Bruce carved out an illustrious career at Manchester United using lashings of bravery, commitment, passion and no little skill.
The 44-year-old used to play on with injuries which would have sidelined a lesser man and, although Bruce the manager does not demand that of his players these days, he does expect plenty of commitment and passion.
Sadly for Bruce and Birmingham City, those qualities which their manager epitomised as a player were sorely lacking on Sunday in a dire 2-0 defeat at West Bromwich Albion.
Bruce described the reverse as one of the worst displays of his tenure at the club and appeared embarrassed by his players' lacklustre efforts.
The post-mortem rumbled on yesterday at the club's Wast Hills training ground and first-team coach Eric Black confirmed Bruce had been stung by his side's abject performance, which came after a 2-0 reverse at Crystal Palace.
"The manager [Bruce] was very disappointed," he said. "It hurt his pride. It hurt the supporters but it would have hurt Steve Bruce ten times as much.
"We have spoken about the game and what we have to change so we make sure it does not happen again."
Although Bruce seems to be the most dismayed at Blues' defeat to Albion, Black says everyone at the club is desperate to put recent shortcomings right in their next Premiership match against Aston Villa.
Blues receive their arch rivals a week on Sunday but Black says Birmingham were so embarrassed by their feeble display at The Hawthorns that they wish the match was sooner.
He said: "We are all disappointed with the way we performed ? every player, the staff and the management. We are disappointed for the fans and we are disappointed that we let ourselves down.
"When you lose a game like that you want a chance to rectify it as quickly as possible.
"The Aston Villa game is a chance to do that. Unfortunately it is a couple of weeks away but it is a great opportunity for us to get the type of result we want which will lift everybody."
Birmingham should have defender Mario Melchiot back for Villa's visit and Bruce has hinted he would make several changes.
David Dunn, who scored in Blues' 2-1 win at Villa last December, will not be available after having a back operation last Saturday to cure his long-standing hamstring problems.
The 25-year-old midfielder, who Black visited yesterday, remains in hospital but Black said Blues were hopeful the operation would cure Dunn's hamstring troubles for good so he would be ready to return for pre-season training in July.
"'Dunny' is in good spirits," Black said. "The operation has gone well and he is desperate to get fit again.
"That's the type of boy he is and we all wish him well for next season because he is a very good player."
* Former Birmingham City midfielder Chris Marsden has retired after failing to overcome injury at Sheffield Wednesday.
The 36-year-old ex-Southampton midfielder has been sidelined since October with a hamstring problem.
In 18 years in the professional game, Marsden also played for Sheffield United, Huddersfield, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Notts County and Korean side Busan Icons.
He said: "I feel devastated, but I'm not 21 any more and the only other option was to sit at the club getting paid. I didn't want that to happen, especially as I'm a Sheffield lad."