Alex McLeish still picking up the pieces of Martin O'Neill departure

McLeish still picking up the pieces of O'Neill departure
© PA Photos
Ahead of Martin O'Neill's return to Villa Park with Sunderland, Aston Villa boss Alex McLeish admits that he is still picking up the pieces following the Ulsterman's abrupt exit from the club.

Aston Villa boss Alex McLeish has admitted that he is still picking up the pieces following Martin O'Neill's abrupt exit from the club.

The Northern Irishman ended a four-year reign at Villa Park by resigning just four days prior to the start of the 2010-11 season.

The now-Sunderland manager achieved back-to-back sixth-placed finishes while at the Midlands club. He also spent heavily and amassed a squad wage bill of £80m.

Kevin MacDonald, Gerard Houllier and Gary McAllister have all occupied the Villa hot-seat since O'Neill's departure.

However, McLeish thinks that the 60-year-old's departure is still impacting the club nearly two years on.

When asked if he was still picking up the pieces following O'Neill's exit, McLeish replied: "Yes, definitely. There are a lot of quality players who have left the club since Martin left. He had a tremendous time at this club and did a great job getting them to heights it is difficult to follow.

"Especially given the loss of a lot of the players Martin signed and not replacing them. That makes it tough [first] for Gerard and for me. But I have got to believe I can get Villa back to the heights where fans expect them to be.

"I know where the club is at the moment and I took the job under those circumstances because I see better things in the future."

O'Neill will return to Villa Park this afternoon as his Black Cats side face Villa in the Premier League.

Gabriel Agbonlahor and Mark Albrighton
Read Next:
Taylor questions Villa players
>
You May Like
Recomended from Sports Mole

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Wolverhampton WanderersWolves28195450222862
2Derby CountyDerby28158544232153
3Cardiff CityCardiff28156740251551
4Aston Villa28148642251750
5Bristol City2813964032848
6Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd281441042321046
7Fulham28129746341245
8Middlesbrough281351038271144
9Brentford28111074235743
10Leeds UnitedLeeds28134114033743
11Preston North EndPreston28101263228442
12Ipswich TownIpswich28124124140140
13Norwich CityNorwich28107112833-537
14Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest28112153543-835
15Millwall28810103333034
16Queens Park RangersQPR2889113140-933
17Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds28711103034-432
18Reading2878133036-629
19Barnsley2869132840-1227
20Bolton WanderersBolton2868142646-2026
21Hull City28510133945-625
22Sunderland28510133047-1725
23Birmingham CityBirmingham2866161639-2324
24Burton Albion2866162152-3124
Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in with Facebook to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account