Speaking exclusively to Football FanCast, former Aston Villa midfielder Lee Hendrie believes his old club will be aiming to play in the Champions League in the near future.
While qualifying for the Europa League still looks like a possibility for the Villans this season, that final Champions League spot is probably out of reach, with quite a few teams standing between them and fourth place.
Going forward, though, Hendrie expects the club’s owners, Wes Edens and Nassef Sawiris, to eventually demand Tuesday and Wednesday night football at Villa Park, a demand he can understand.
On Villa’s ambitions for the future, the retired Premier League footballer told FFC in an exclusive interview:
“Players have got to buy into what the club wants to do, you know, they’re not going to just jump straight into the Champions League. I’m pretty sure that will be one of the main targets for the football club [however] with the owners having such wealth.
“That will certainly be a key thing. Where they want to be at is that they’re playing in Europe because that’s where the club should be at.”
While this season may come too soon, Villa are at least on the right track to becoming a competitive side again.
Last season, Dean Smith’s side ran Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City close in the Carabao Cup final, narrowly losing out in a 2-1 defeat at Wembley. That, and their league position this term, gives reason to be optimistic.