Aston Villa boss Steve Bruce: It was hard to lose a model professional like Ashley Westwood
The 26-year-old ended his four-year stint at Aston Villa by sealing a £5million move to Premier League side Burnley in January.
And Bruce insists it was the right move for the midfielder as he felt the former Crewe star needed a new challenge.
Bruce said: "I wish Ashley Westwood well, he is a model professional.
"I think it was time for him to move on, he has been through the tough times at the club which weren't easy.
Ashley Westwood insists things at Aston Villa got 'a bit stale' after completing his move to Burnley
"I felt it was right for everyone, I said that to him at the time and that I felt he needed a new challenge."
Westwood was relegated at Villa and split opinion among fans.
And despite Bruce's tributes, Westwood aimed a dig at Villa following his departure last week by outlining he will 'feel appreciated' at Turf Moor with his time at Villa becoming 'a bit stale'.
"I’m delighted to be here. It’s happened fast but I’ve been here today and been made to feel very welcome and I can’t wait to get going," Westwood said.
Westwood spent four years at Aston Villa before completing his £5m transfer to Burnley
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“It feels like a proper football club and homely and that’s what I like. I like to be appreciated and I think I will definitely get that here."
He added: “The manager at Villa said I could speak to Burnley and for me that was perfect – a fresh start because things had got a bit stale at Villa.
“It’s a fresh start and I want to show people what I can really do.
“I have had some great times at Villa but recently it’s not been too good. It’s a fresh start here, I’m back in the Premier League and I’ve got another chance.
“Coming here into a dressing room like this, full of British talent, and people who want to do well."