Friday 20 April 2018

Lambert waits on Lerner call

Aston Villa 3 Hull City 1

Jordan Bowery of Aston Villa is challenged by Liam Rosenior of Hull City
Jordan Bowery of Aston Villa is challenged by Liam Rosenior of Hull City
BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MAY 03: Marc Albrighton of Aston Villa is challenged by Stephen Quinn of Hull City during the Barclays Premier League match between Aston Villa and Hull City at Villa Park on May 3, 2014 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

Rory Dollard

Victory over Hull may have all but assured Aston Villa safety from relegation, but manager Paul Lambert remains in the dark about owner Randy Lerner's intentions for the club.

Speculation that Lerner will look to sell the club this summer has been growing since he released a vague statement last month which indicated only that he would clarify his own position at the end of the season.

With Premier League football now virtually assured following this victory at Villa Park, all eyes are on the American businessman's next move. But Lambert, whose own future is uncertain as a result of perceived instability at the top, has no inside track.

Asked what developments he expected at boardroom level, the Scot said: "You're asking me a question I can't give an answer to and that's me being honest. The chairman will come out and say what he's going to say and I really don't know what he will say. His statement is what it is. I understand what has gone on in the last few weeks and I'm pretty sure people will find out soon."

Lambert was more comfortable reflecting on footballing matters, with a first win in seven matches delivered by Ashley Westwood's opener inside the first minute and a pair of headers from Andreas Weimann.

Pressure had been mounting by the week and Lambert was pleased to see the response he wanted both on and off the field.

"The crowd was excellent," he said. "I think people were probably thinking there would be some animosity towards myself – and if that happens you've got to accept it – but the start we got put everybody in a good frame of mind."

Hull boss Steve Bruce, whose side slipped below Villa and into 15th place after a third successive game without a win, admitted FA Cup final fever has had an effect on his side.

Attention in East Yorkshire has been focused firmly on the May 17 trip to Wembley since last month's semi-final success over Sheffield United, but Bruce has been battling hard to keep his players on the task at hand.

As yet, it is a battle he has been losing. "I've said for the last couple of weeks we have to keep focused," he said.

"The whole city is talking about the FA Cup final and why shouldn't it be? But it's been very, very difficult to keep a lid on it when we've still got a little bit of work to do."

Sunday Indo Sport

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