Tim Sherwood was finally told to grab his gilet and leave after just 254 days in charge of Villa following the 2-1 home defeat to Swansea on Saturday. Use of the word ‘finally’ after merely eight months may seem a tad over the top, especially given his impact in the final months of last season, but in truth the dismissal had been coming after a long string of horribly sub-par results.
Here’s a look at the Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Sherwood’s time in charge of Villa.
However much blame you choose to attribute to the former Spurs boss for the way things have started for the club this season, there can be no doubt that he had a major influence on the players and the results in the final months of a desperate campaign last season. When he arrived at Bodymoor Heath in Febuary, Villa had won two of their previous 21 league matches and were in the relegation zone on goal difference.
Despite losing his first two, Sherwood’s Villa kickstarted their quest for survival with the double victory over West Brom and the 4-0 thrashing of Sunderland as they won seven of their next 11 matches in all competitions after the defeat at St. James’ Park.
Not only should Sherwood take the majority of the credit for leading the club to survival with three points to spare when all hope looked lost, but he also gave the club’s fans two of the greatest days to be a Villa supporter in recent times (admittedly, there have been precious few to choose from) with the 2-0 FA Cup quarter-final victory at Villa Park over local rivals West Brom and the sensational 2-1 win over the media darling that was the Steven Gerrard-led Liverpool in the semi-final at Wembley.
That Wembley win was the best performance that I can remember from my club in years, driven by the key duo of Christian Benteke and Fabian Delph, and a platform for the emerging talent of Jack Grealish to showcase his ability.
Gutted , thank you for everything 😔 pic.twitter.com/coIpMPdxFq
— Jack Grealish (@JackGrealish1) October 25, 2015
Grealish is another thing that Villa owe Sherwood for; his talent was clear for fans to see under the latter months of Paul Lambert’s reign, but where the Scotsman stubbornly refused to give the then-teenager his opportunity, Sherwood took him under his wing and allowed him to blossom.
The bond between player and manager was clear to see when the midfielder ran to his manager to celebrate his first goal for his boyhood club in the defeat to Leicester City earlier this season, and Grealish summed that feeling up in a heartfelt tweet upon the news of Sherwood’s sacking.
Click next page for the Bad & Ugly…