Saturday 18 November 2017

Garde set for Aston Villa as Sherwood gets £2m pay-off

Aston Villa 1-2 Swansea City

Tim Sherwood became the third Premier League manager to lose his job this season following Aston Villa's defeat to Swansea
Tim Sherwood became the third Premier League manager to lose his job this season following Aston Villa's defeat to Swansea

John Percy

Aston Villa are in talks to appoint Remi Garde as their new manager in a move inspired by Arsenal.

Tim Sherwood's eight-month reign ended yesterday when the 46-year-old became the third Premier League managerial casualty of the season.

Sherwood, who will receive £2m in compensation, leaves the club with Villa bottom of the table after eight defeats from 10 games.

Chief executive Tom Fox, who was pivotal in the decision after extensive talks with chairman Randy Lerner, is leading the hunt for Villa's third manager in under 12 months.

Garde, the former Arsenal defender and Lyon manager, has been approached and could be appointed later this week with a view to him taking charge for the league game at Tottenham next Monday.

Fox was previously Arsenal's chief commercial officer and is understood to have spoken to Arsene Wenger about Garde.


Villa also considered moves for David Moyes, but he is determined to stay in Spain with Real Sociedad.

Garde is highly regarded after impressing while in charge of Lyon, winning the Coupe de France in 2012. He left the French club in 2014 and is understood to have held talks with Newcastle earlier this year.

Sherwood had known the writing was on the wall for some time and his final months were played out against a backdrop of turmoil surrounding the club's transfer policy.

His working relationship with sporting director Hendrick Almstadt had disintegrated, so six defeats in a row was always going to signal the sack.

His team selection for Saturday's match was baffling and there seemed a clear strategy to exclude the summer signings who were brought in for such hefty fees.

There have also been strange substitutions and unfathomable formations as Sherwood desperately tried to find the formula for a victory.

While Sherwood has paid the ultimate price, Lerner should be demanding a root and branch review of how it has all gone so wrong and that would place key decision-makers including Almstadt, director of recruitment Paddy Reilly and Fox under the microscope.

It was Fox who appointed Sherwood and then this summer he raided Arsenal for Almstadt, while the decision to promote Reilly, previously an analyst under Martin O'Neill, is a gamble that has badly backfired.

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