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Gerard Houllier expects to be given time as Villa boss

Gerard Houllier
Houllier was appointed Villa manager in September

Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier is confident that owner Randy Lerner will give him time to steer the club away from the relegation zone.

Villa, who have picked up just three points out of 21, are just a point above the relegation zone ahead of Sunday's game at Chelsea.

Houllier said: "Am I fighting for my job? If I have to do that, then I am in the wrong club. I don't think so.

"Mr Lerner knows we are going through a difficult period," added the Frenchman.

The 63-year-old Houllier has had a difficult time since taking over at Villa Park in September following Martin O'Neill's shock resignation in August and the Midlands club head to Stamford Bridge after a 4-0 defeat by Manchester City in midweek.

There have been a lot of headlines about double training sessions but we only had one such session - and that was during an international break

Gerard Houllier

"In difficult times you see the people around you - and they have been top class," added Houllier.

"What's a fair timescale for me to be judged fairly? I didn't expect to go that down [the table].

"But at the same time I think it's an exciting challenge, even more so. What I need is to get some players fighting together to get some results and see where we are in February."

Last month Houllier denied reports of a major player rebellion and ahead of the Chelsea game he suggested defender Richard Dunne and midfielder Stephen Ireland - two players reportedly at odds with the Villa boss - could still have a future at the club.

"Dunne is back because his performances have improved in training," said Houllier.

"He was never out of the team because of some bust-up I was reading about," added the former Liverpool boss, referring to Dunne's reported training-ground row with Villa's assistant manager Gary McAllister.

606: DEBATE
Heskeys Noggin

"He [Dunne] had a word which lasted half a second with Macca [McAllister]. I took him out of the team because he was under performing and he was not the only one.

"I have watched all the training he has done and I think I'll give him the chance.

"With Stephen, we will see. I have been pleased with him. He has a different attitude to the beginning so he will soon be back."

Houllier also defended the training regime he has introduced since taking over from O'Neill.

"We train more. When there is a change, there is always resistance to change," said Houllier.

"There have been a lot of headlines about double training sessions but we only had one such session - and that was during an international break.

"But, if you say 'would you go back to training less and having a different style of play' I would say no."



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see also
Chelsea 3-3 Aston Villa
02 Jan 11 |  Premier League
Manchester City 4-0 Aston Villa
28 Dec 10 |  Premier League
Houllier denies player rebellion
17 Dec 10 |  Aston Villa
Villa back Houllier for long haul
10 Dec 10 |  Aston Villa
Houllier named Aston Villa boss
08 Sep 10 |  Aston Villa


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