Remi Garde has revealed Gerard Houllier advised him to take up the vacant coach’s position at Aston Villa.
Houllier spent less than a year at Villa Park between 2010 and 2011 before stepping down due to illness.
Garde previously worked as the 68-year-old’s assistant at Lyon, and disclosed the close relationship between the pair facilitated his decision to join Villa as Tim Sherwood’s replacement.
“Gerard told me a lot of good, positive things,” he told AVTV.
“He encouraged me to take the job. We had a long chat together.
“Actually I visited him when he was manager of Aston Villa. So I was not totally lost when I came here to [training ground] Bodymoor Heath.
“We liked each other very much. I don’t know why – sometimes you can’t explain why.
“We had a spell together at Lyon and then we never lost contact.
“Of course when he spoke to me about Aston Villa it was all positive.
“He told me: ‘Go on, it’s a difficult situation currently but it’s a big club with people who will work for you’. He told me they were very supportive.”
After watching Monday’s 3-1 defeat to Tottenham from the stands, Garde’s first fixture at the helm will be at home against Premier League leaders Manchester City on Sunday.