Whelan baffled by manager plans

Getting rid of Dean Smith would be a “silly mistake” from the Aston Villa board, according to Noel Whelan.

The former Premier League striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted the 50-year-old had proven himself as a “great manager” during his time at the club.

As revealed by Football Insider, Villa are considering a manager change in the medium-to-long term in order to meet the owners’ lofty ambitions.

Aston Villa” width=”590″ height=”405″ srcset=”https://www.footballinsider247.com/static/uploads/1/2021/01/fbl-eng-pr-aston-villa-sheffield-united_590x405.jpg 590w, /static/uploads/1/2021/01/fbl-eng-pr-aston-villa-sheffield-united_590x405-300×206.jpg 300w, /static/uploads/1/2021/01/fbl-eng-pr-aston-villa-sheffield-united_590x405-100×70.jpg 100w, /static/uploads/1/2021/01/fbl-eng-pr-aston-villa-sheffield-united_590x405-218×150.jpg 218w” sizes=”(max-width: 590px) 100vw, 590px” />

It is understood the Villans have a “strong interest” in Rangers manager Steven Gerrard as a possible replacement.

Wes Edens and Nassef Sawiris, Villa’s owners, want to establish the club as regular top-four contenders, with hope of a top-six finish this term.

A Villa source told Football Insider chief executive Christian Purslow, who effectively runs the club, does not see Smith as “big enough” to achieve their goal.