Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish
paid for a season of mediocrity with his job on Monday as his
disappointing season in charge of the Premier League club ended
with his sacking.
McLeish, who suffered relegation with Villa's arch rivals
Birmingham City last season, was never a popular choice with the
fans and he struggled to win them over during a campaign in
which his side won only seven of 38 league matches.
A statement on Villa's website said that
McLeish's contract has been terminated with immediate effect.
"The club has been disappointed with this season's results,
performances and the general message these have sent to our
fans," it said.
"The board wishes to assure supporters that we are conscious
in every sense that Villa expects and deserves more and we will
strive to deliver this."
Villa chairman Randy Lerner said: "We need to be clear and
candid with ourselves and with supporters about what we have
lacked in recent years.
"Compelling play and results that instil a sense of
confidence that Villa is on the right track have been plainly
"The most immediate action that we can take is to look
carefully at our options in terms of bringing in a new manager
who sees the club's potential and embraces our collective
Villa suffered a woeful run of form in the Premier League,
finishing in 16th place, two points above relegated Bolton
Wanderers, and ending with a 2-0 defeat at Norwich City that
earned a stinging rebuke from the Scot.
"That was an unacceptable performance in Aston Villa
colours," McLeish, whose side failed to win any of their last 10
league matches told the club's website. "I have to change that.
There will be change."
Wigan Athletic manager Roberto Martinez was in the frame for
the Villa job before it was offered to McLeish last year and
after another stirring finish to the season for his side he will
be among the favourites to take over.
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