Randy Lerner will not discuss his intentions for Aston Villa until the end of the season, he has told the official club website.
As Villa endure another difficult campaign on the pitch, it has been widely reported that Lerner will look to sell the club during the summer. It has been suggested that there are offers on the table for the Midlands outfit from Russia and the United States, and the American will listen to these before deciding whether or not to cash in.
Following the goalless draw with Southampton on Saturday afternoon, which edged Paul Lambert’s side ever close to Premier League safety, Lerner released a statement in an attempt to address the ownership situation. However, fans are now clearer on the subject, after the 52-year-old announced no decision will be made until the summer.
He told the official club website “As regards my personal role at the club and the steady rumours of a sale, I will address these after the season. Paul Lambert, Paul Faulkner and I speak daily and remain committed to the immediate job of limiting distraction and confusion in order that Villa have the best chance of finishing on a strong note.”
Villa finished 15th in the Premier League standings last season, the position they currently occupy with just four matches of the campaign remaining. Whilst they are still not mathematically assured of maintaining their presence in the top-flight next term, they are five points above the drop zone and two of the sides in the bottom three, Cardiff City and Fulham, have played a game more than Lambert’s team.
The Scot was a popular appointment when he replaced Alex McLeish in 2012, but there is a growing number of Villa fans who are frustrated with the lack of progress being made by the former Norwich City boss. Whilst he has had to deal with injuries to the likes of summer signings Jores Okore and Libor Kozak this term, and more recently Christian Benteke, he feels his job would be made easier if he could add more quality to his options.
“The finances are vital for this league,” he said. “The better the players you buy, the better chance you have of doing something. All the players I’ve been linked with cost one hell of a lot of money. If you don’t have it, then you have to work within the parameters that you’ve got. With this league, and how hard it is, you’ve got to look at it and say, ‘Okay, we can go and get x, y and z’. But the big ones I’ve been linked with, you couldn’t do it.”