Following the sacking of Paul Lambert last week, Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner has acted quickly and appointed former Tottenham Hotspur boss Tim Sherwood as the new man in charge at Villa Park. Tim Sherwood is known for his slightly unorthodox method of management and his willingness to give youth a chance, in this piece I am going to investigate whether he is the right man for the job at Aston Villa.
As a whole, Villa have a young squad with the average age in the squad standing at a mere 26.8 years old and some of the younger players in the were being integrated into the squad too slowly. This is something that has frustrated the supporters massively this season. The fans were crying out for Paul Lambert to give Jack Grealish a start in the league since he returned from a successful loan spell at Notts County but it never came. In his substitute appearances Grealish looked to have the bit of guile Villa have been missing but Lambert never took a chance on the floppy haired 19-year-old. Soccer fans always love to see youth get a chance and this is something Tim Sherwood may look to use to get the fans behind him from the start. Other young players like Callum Robinson, Nicklas Helenius, Joe Bennet and Gary Gardner have been sent out on loan despite their capability to have a huge impact on the first time. Next year (when they return to their parent club) could be a crucial period in these players’ careers.
Tim Sherwood’s time at Spurs is mainly remembered for his comments after a 4-0 defeat against local rivals Chelsea.
“[There is a] lack of characters. Too many of them are too nice to each other. We need to show a bit more guts and not want to be someone’s mate all the time.”
“There’s a few I’d count on. There’s a few I wouldn’t. I’m not going to forget about this by the time we get on the motorway.”
Sherwood later stated that they (Tottenham) would be moving on and not dwelling on the incident but it just shows how exuberant the ex-Blackburn Rovers midfielder can be. He was also one of the first managers in English soccer to manage his team from the stands, something which has become trendy now in the Premier League with managers like Nigel Pearson adopting the new style. In past seasons, relegation threatened clubs have brought in an out of the ordinary manager in order to save themselves and motivate the players. These managers more often than not leave the club at the end of the season or are sacked early in the next term, with Paulo Di Canio being the prime example. Judging from his previous job and his character, Sherwood has the ability to be both an immediate motivator but also to continue to instil his style of play as time goes on.
In just five months at Tottenham, Sherwood had the highest win percentage to his name, coming out on top in half of his Premier League matches and 59% of time in all competitions. Andre Villas-Boas takes second place in all competitions with 53% respectively. This stat backs up that the 46-year-old is actually a quality manager and that he has the credentials to keep up his new club.