Villa start hunt for a new manager

Aston Villa are starting their search for a new manager following Wednesday evening’s departure of Paul Lambert.


Paul Lambert’s tough tenure as Aston Villa boss is over

The Scot paid the price for the club’s plunge into the Barclays Premier League relegation zone, despite signing a contract extension after a good start to the season in September.

However, Villa’s form quickly deteriorated and included a dismal run of 659 minutes without a top-flight goal. It ended against Chelsea on Saturday but Tuesday’s loss at Hull saw them drop into the bottom three.

It is believed that Lambert was dismissed, rather than departing by mutual consent. Press Association Sport also understands he will receive a pay-off amounting to one year’s salary.

The 45-year-old faced increasing signs of unrest from supporters, while the Birmingham Mail launched a campaign calling for Lambert’s removal just hours before the club announced his departure.

A statement on the club’s official website said: ”Aston Villa Football Club has parted company this evening with manager Paul Lambert.

”First-team coach Scott Marshall and goalkeeping coach Andy Marshall will continue to prepare the squad for Sunday’s FA Cup tie with Leicester City at Villa Park.

”The club would also like to place on record its thanks to Paul and take this opportunity to wish him every success in the future.

”The club will announce a new manager in due course. There will be no further comment from the club at this stage.”

Lambert replaced fellow Scot Alex McLeish in June 2012 but struggled to win over supporters who were slow to warm to what many perceived as a negative style of play.

Former Tottenham boss Tim Sherwood, current Real Madrid assistant Paul Clement and United States head coach Jurgen Klinsmann have already been installed among the bookmakers’ favourites to replace Lambert, as owner Randy Lerner begins the search for a new boss.

Meanwhile, former striker Peter Withe has offered to help out Villa as they seek the right candidate to lift them out of danger.

Withe, who scored Villa’s winner in the 1982 European Cup final against Bayern Munich and has had a varied career in management including spells with Wimbledon, Thailand and Indonesia, s aid: “I will help them for nothing.

“I think they’ve got to get someone who has a feel for the club and can bring the fans back and also just inspire the players a little bit. ”