5 Things which cost Aston Villa their place in the Barclays Premier League
Published 16/04/2016 | 17:06
Aston Villa have been relegated from the top flight for the first time in 29 years.
They have won just three Barclays Premier League games this season and have had four managers. H ere, Press Association Sport looks at five things which sent Villa down.
AN ABSENT OWNER
Randy Lerner officially put the club on the market in May 2014 but it had already been up for sale months before. The party line has always been Lerner's enthusiasm for the club has never diminished but actions speak louder than words. Lerner, leaving the running of the club to new chairman Steve Hollis, has demonstrated he wants no part in Aston Villa's future.
POOR SUMMER BUSINESS
No one doubted Villa needed a summer overhaul after several years of struggle on a shoestring but the club blew the money on 13 misfits. They failed to replace Fabian Delph, Christian Benteke and Ron Vlaar and signed Jordan Veretout, Jordan Ayew and Jordan Amavi from France. They lacked the nous and ability to adapt to English football while Rudy Gestede could never fill Benteke's boots.
A LACK OF DISCIPLINE
A toxic atmosphere surrounds the club and the behaviour of the players on and off the pitch has contributed to it. No matter what the players say their actions did little to show they cared. Jack Grealish, Joleon Lescott and Gabby Agbonlahor - who was placed under a club investigation for allegedly smoking shisha and bringing bad publicity on the club while on holiday last month - were all publicly chastised and ridiculed by fans and the media. Former boss Remi Garde also encountered resistance from players who were content in their cushy positions.
RESULTS AND PERFORMANCES
The be all and end all. Just one win from their opening 20 league games - which came on the first day of the season - had them doomed early. Former boss Tim Sherwood was not up to the job and fell out with the board, leaving them no option but to sack him for Remi Garde. Results failed to improve before he left last month having overseen a 6-0 defeat to Liverpool in February, Villa's biggest home loss for 81 years.
THE WRONG APPOINTMENTS
The exits of chief executive Tom Fox and sporting director Hendrik Almstadt in March were par of a review conducted by chairman Hollis. Villa had inexperienced men in key positions, with head of scouting and recruitment Paddy Riley also under the spotlight, and it showed. In Tim Sherwood and Remi Garde they also had managers who were not the right fit for Villa's situation. Villa are doing the right things to turn the corner, bringing in ex-boss Brian Little as an advisor to the board, but it has been too late to save them.