Published on 21 Oct 2022 11:31 am (UK Time)
Steven Gerrard was relieved of his managerial duties only an hour after full-time on Thursday night, as Aston Villa was thumped by Fulham 3-0 at Craven Cottage.
Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard has come under pressure in recent months. Coming into a fixture against Fulham needing a result to lift the spirits at the club.
With only two wins in the opening 11 fixtures and currently 17th in the Premier League, the writing seemed on the wall for Gerrard if results did not turn quickly.
However, any hope for a spark dimmed quickly as Harrison Reed opened the scoring for Fulham in the 36th minute. To compound the issue Douglas Luiz was sent off as Fulham went on to finish the game 3-0 victors through an Aleksandar Mitrovic penalty and Tyrone Mings own goal.
“You know and I know I’m in a difficult position right now,” were the words of a dejected Gerrard post-match and his words were proved correct as the club shortly released a statement after the defeat stating: “Aston Villa Football Club can confirm that head coach Steven Gerrard has left the club with immediate effect.”
There were many questions that were posed to the legendary Liverpool midfielder as he was appointed only just 11 months ago, with many believing that the former Rangers boss was a ‘risk’ for Aston Villa.
In an interview post-match the former Aston Villa boss honestly assessed the situation saying: “I’ve been sending messages to the fans for the last few weeks because I certainly share their frustration and their pain.
“I’m someone who is honest. I know that they’re not enjoying it at the moment, I’m certainly not, so we’ll see what happens moving forward. But you know and I know I’m in a very difficult position right now.
“The performance was miles away from what I want, expect and stand for. I understand the fans’ frustration and it was so far from how we looked at the weekend. We’re in this situation, I’m in it to face the tough questions because the reality is it’s not good enough for the club.
“Those decisions are out of my control. I have been around the game a long time, I understand the situation and won’t sugar-coat the situation or give anyone false lines. I want to be as honest as I can.
“We’ll see what happens moving forwards. But football is in my DNA and quitting is certainly not, so we’ll see what happens moving forwards.”
Gary McAllister, Neil Critchley, Tom Culshaw, Jordan Milsom and Scott Mason also left the club with immediate effect on Friday following Gerrard’s departure.
First-team coach Aaron Danks will take over Gerrard’s responsibilities ahead of Aston Villa’s next fixture at home against Brentford on Sunday as they begin to search for a new head coach.
Who Is Next For Villa?
Former Tottenham Hotpsur and Paris Saint Germain manager, Mauricio Pochettino is currently favourite for the position as he leads the Paddy Power odds to become the next Aston Villa manager at 4/7 odds.
The Argentinian would fit the Aston Villa job role perfectly as he has proven himself as a top-level club builder in his recent Premier League roles as Southampton and Tottenham boss.
Second in the odds list is former Arsenal and current Villarreal manager Unai Emery with 5/1 odds, followed by Brentford boss Thomas Frank (10/1), Thomas Tuchel (10/1), Michael Beale (13/2) and Sean Dyche (12/1).
Fixture List Pre-World Cup
Brentford (H) – October 23, 2pm – Premier League
Newcastle (A) – October 29, 3pm – Premier League
Manchester United (H) – November 6, 2pm – Premier League
Manchester United (A) – November 10, 8pm – Carabao Cup (third round)
Brighton (A) – November 13, 2pm – Premier League