When Tim Sherwood took over at Aston Villa he stated that one of his biggest goals (alongside securing the club’s survival in the Premier League) was to help Christian Benteke to find his scoring boots again.
Speaking when he took over the Premier League club in February he said, “I remember playing against Christian Benteke as a manager, what a handful he can be. We need to get back to that. He needs a goal for himself. That will breed confidence.
“He will be an important part because we know what he can be. All the best clubs in the world were after him. I’m sure we can tap into that confidence and get him back firing,” he added.
Benteke has finally started to answer his critics by scoring a brace in their 4-0 win against relegation rivals Sunderland at the weekend.
So has Tim Sherwood managed to work his magic already?
Last weekend’s win was Tim Sherwood’s first, of what he hopes is many, since being in charge of Villa and he has high hopes that Benteke will be the one helping him keep winning.
But while Sherwood was hoping it would be him that got the credit for helping the striker regain his confidence it was actually somebody else!
According to the Birmingham Mail, Benteke has praised his fellow teammate Leandro Bacuna for helping him rediscover his form.
While everyone is looking at the striker to put the balls in the back of the net, Benteke looks to winger Bacuna for the crosses.
He told the Birmingham Mail, “In the past weeks we have not created enough chances but he did so well- it helps when you have him putting in shots like that.”
Tim Sherwood has brought the back the belief that has been missing in the team for most of the season.
While Benteke needed his confidence to attack using his strength in the air, Tim Sherwood has also helped Bacuna’s confidence in going forward. .
Sherwood has encouraged the winger/ full back to push forward and attack from the back and it is helping the strikers up front.
They are now getting more deliveries which statistically means they’re going to have more chances at getting a goal!
All in all, the new manager seems to have reminded Villa that they can play football.
He is shaking things up in the team, instilling confidence and doing everything that Villa needed in order to fight to get out of the relegation battle.
The team look more confident in their own abilities and while it has taken a few games for things to fit in to place, this could be the start of a good run for Villa.
The game’s a team effort and while the team around him are improving it can only mean one thing for Benteke- he should keep improving too.
While Aston Villa are not quite safe yet, it looks like Benteke’s goals could be the key to their survival (or their demise- but let’s not mention that bit!).