Republic of Ireland goalkeeper Shay Given has been forthright with his views on his club’s (Aston Villa) season, admitting: “We deserve to be where we are.”
Following Saturday’s lucky 0-0 draw with Sunderland (Nicklas Bendtner had a late ‘winner’ wrongly disallowed for offside for the Black Cats); Villa now sit five points above the Premier League relegation zone having mustered just four home Premier League wins (from 17 ties at Villa Park) all season.
They now host Bolton Wanderers on Tuesday night (kick-off 7:45pm) in a clash the Villains must get something out of or they face being sucked right into the relegation mire with just three games remaining. Defeat for Villa would mean that Wanderers (currently second bottom) would be just three points adrift of Villa with a game in hand.
Veteran Given admitted following Saturday’s tepid draw: “It has been frustrating the whole season. We haven’t had enough victories at home. We don’t want to stumble the wrong side of the line because we know we are not safe yet. We are five points clear but Wigan have shown any results can happen at the bottom.”
Given, who is Ireland’s record caps holder with 121 appearances for his country has admitted that Villa (who he joined from Manchester City last summer for £5million) have underperformed this season:
“We don’t want to be where we are at. But we are where we are and there is no getting away from that.
“The table never lies and we are where we are because we deserve to be there. We don’t deserve to be any higher as we haven’t picked the points up.
“I think we have under-achieved as a club and as a team. The young lads are coming into the team and it’s tough on them coming in when there is so much pressure on us to get these last few results to stay up.”
A draw against Bolton will ensure Villa’s Premier League survival. Defeat however and they will need one more win from their last three games to stay above the trap door.