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Skipper calls for everyone at the club to 'stick together' and urges supporters not to protest against manager Alex McLeish in the last game of the season at Villa park

Aston Villa captain Richard Dunne has called for unity at the club as they fight to retain their Premier League status.

Villa have been sucked into the relegation battle after gaining only two points from in their last five games, leaving them only three points clear of the bottom three with only two games remaining.

However, Dunne is concerned amidst news that a section of disgruntled Villa fans are planning a protest against Alex McLeish.

Saturday's Birmingham Mail contained a small backpage advert funded by a website run by Villa fans, which read: "We were really hoping never to say this but....WE TOLD YOU SO. 'Bright Future?'"

Despite the negative mood around the club, Dunne hopes the club's supporters will get behind the team during the match.

"The fans want success and it's very difficult for everybody to understand why we're down there," Dunne told the Birmingham Mail.

"The situation has evolved over the season, which has caused the problems, and we need the fans. Everybody understands the frustrations, they're not happy with us as players and the management and the club as a whole.

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"But we need the supporters because they want to watch Premier League football next season. The best thing they can do is support us and whatever happens, happens after that.

"We just need the fans to stick with us. We know ourselves it's not been good enough at times, but the effort is always there.

"For the last three weeks we need to pull in the same direction, we don't want anyone to think we're not doing our best. We want everyone to support us so that we can get out of this together."

Following the disciplinary action taken against James Collins, Chris Herd and Fabian Delph for their nightclub altercation and reports of protests from fans, there has been doubts whether the Villa team would embark on their traditional lap of honour after the match.

However Alex McLeish believes his side will still do a lap of honour after the game, whatever the result.

"I would like to think the players will thank the fans for their support regardless [of the protests] so that should be a given," McLeish said.

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