Despite enjoying a relatively successful start to life as Aston Villa manager last season, Tim Sherwood has nonetheless begun the 2015/16 campaign in rather turbulent style so far at Villa Park. His team currently sit 17th in the Premier League table, one spot above the dreaded relegation zone with only a single isolated win currently to their name.
For one reason or another, Sherwood’s team of potentially exciting talents just haven’t seem to hit the ground running as of yet. Such an evaluation remains particularly true for the succession of new additions drafted in at the club this summer, in light of Christian Benteke’s big money departure to Liverpool. Each of Jordan Ayew, Idrissa Gueye, Adama Traore and Jordan Amavi – among several others – have so far failed to justify their rather sizeable transfer fees since first being introduced within the English top-flight this summer.
So then, whilst the 2015/16 campaign admittedly remains in its infant stages at this particular moment in time, is Tim Sherwood ultimately still the right man to be leading Aston Villa in the modern era?
Well, without wanting to put this particular argument to bed almost instantaneously – yes, Tim Sherwood is the right man for Aston Villa right now. He may not possess a vast amount of domestic or European experience under his belt at this time in his managerial life, but that doesn’t mean he lacks the potential to become a truly successful coach in the English top-flight.
This is the man who impressively led Aston Villa to the F.A. Cup final last season of course, after staving the threat of relegation off rather easily in the end despite many considering his side dead certs for the drop prior to his appointment at Villa Park.
Any Aston Villa fan who currently remains somewhat sceptical over Tim Sherwood’s position at their club, need only cast their mind back to last season when the ill-fated Paul Lambert reigned supreme. The former Norwich City coach clearly lacked the tactical know-how and man-management ability to make it in the Premier League – and when compared to the level of enthusiasm Sherwood seems to portray in abundance – Lambert was ultimately about as animated as an old aged pensioner waiting for his lift home at the bus stop.
Obviously that remains a somewhat brash way of putting it, but Tim Sherwood nonetheless deserves great credit for raising the spirits of the Villa Park faithful when they had been at their lowest ebb in a long while. He is an emotive character who feels every pass, shot and tackle his side successfully completes out on the pitch. When Villa win in the modern era, Sherwood seems close to the happiest man on Earth – yet when they lose in often unfortunate style – the former Tottenham Hotspur manager seemingly feels it worse than anyone else.
Such a hands-on approach to modern day top-flight management should be admired in the cold light of day. Aston Villa remain a big club in terms of history and their current fan-base – but let’s face it – they’re not going to be attracting any world class players, or world class managers for that matter, in the foreseeable future. The Villa Park faithful must therefore appreciate Sherwood’s contribution in the dug-out, even if he still admittedly has a lot to learn in the management game.
Nevertheless, the 46-year-old ex-Blackburn Rovers player currently reigns over a decent little squad brimming with potential from all angles. Whilst most of the current Aston Villa players are yet to fully establish themselves as genuine top-flight stars with all things considered – the likes of Jack Grealish, Micah Richards and Scott Sinclair offer their current manager a nice mix of youthful energy and experience at this stage in the game. Such a promising notion will surely pay dividends for the Villa Park faithful with a little bit of faith somewhere down the line.
Even in the absence of the aforementioned Christian Benteke and fellow summer departee, Fabian Delph, Aston Villa still have enough to improve on their fortunes this season – for in Tim Sherwood, they ultimately have a manager willing to prove himself at the highest level, and not just someone happy to collect the pay-cheque with every passing week.
Villa fans need only show a little confidence in their side now more than ever, and the results will likely soon follow suit.