Aston Villa must beat Sunderland – Lambert
Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert has said his side have to beat fellow strugglers Sunderland if they are to avoid relegation from the Premier League.
Speaking after Monday night’s 3-0 defeat to Manchester United, Lambert was quick to look forward to next Monday’s relegation battle.
“We’ve got to win it,” he told reporters.
“Sunderland are going well but it is an opportunity for us. We are at home. We know what we have to do and that’s a good thing.”
Villa were resoundingly beaten by a Robin van Persie hat-trick as United sealed their 20th title at Old Trafford.
Having lost 8-0 to Chelsea earlier on in the season, the signs looked ominous when van Persie completed his treble 12 minutes before half-time.
But Villa kept United out, leaving Lambert with reason to be optimistic going into the final four games of the season.
“When the third goal went in I was thinking this could be a long, long night but I could not fault the players at all for the way they kept going,” he said.
“The worrying thing was if we capitulated like what happened at Stamford Bridge, and whether psychologically the players who played there would be affected.
“But credit to our players in the second half. They came out and we had some really good chances.”
Villa host Paolo Di Canio’s side next Monday and can move level on points with their opponents with a victory.
They then travel to Norwich and face Chelsea again before a last-day trip to Wigan, who sit one place and three points behind them in the last relegation spot.
Tue 23 April, 2013