Thursday 22 February 2018

Tim Sherwood: Survival is nothing to celebrate but FA Cup crown certainly would be

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood
Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood

Phil Barnett

Aston Villa will not be celebrating their Barclays Premier League survival despite getting the "job done", according to manager Tim Sherwood.

Villa are not even holding an end-of-season awards dinner this year and will not throw their players a party to mark their escape from the drop, because Sherwood believes such a lowly finish is nothing to celebrate for a club of their size.

"It's 'job done', as far as I'm concerned," said the former Tottenham boss.

"They brought me into the club to win Premier League survival and we did that. The team had won five games in 25 before I came in. We needed to match that to stay in the division and we've managed to do that."

Sherwood insists only victory over Arsenal in next week's FA Cup final will merit a celebration.

"I think it would have been in bad taste to celebrate like that and I don't think a club like Aston Villa should be celebrating escaping relegation, to be perfectly honest," he said.

"It's a big relief but if we're celebrating escaping relegation every year then we aren't doing something right.

"I'm not sure that escaping relegation is a good season for Aston Villa.

"We'll only have an end-of-season celebration if we win the FA Cup.

"We've got to look higher than just staying in the Premier League. Obviously we're not going to go from that into a Europa League team next season but I think we need a consolidating season and to build the club and take it in the right direction."

Villa's survival with a game to spare came thanks to results elsewhere, as they went down 5-1 at Southampton.

"It was a disappointing result at Southampton to say the least, but we learned at the end of the day that we were safe," said Sherwood.

"I would have taken a 10-0 bashing at Southampton in return for being safe at the end of the day. We'll learn from the mistakes we made at Southampton but we can also be proud of the fact we've stayed in this division for another season.

"We'll take that on and it's my job to make sure we build the club and, hopefully, make sure we don't find ourselves in a relegation battle again."

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