Scottish manager demands improvement from his side after a draw with Tottenham saw Premier League survival all but ensured only one game before the end of the seasonAston Villa boss Alex McLeish has called for a huge improvement from his players next season following a stressful first year in the hotseat.
The Villans virtually ensured survival from the Premier League with one game remaining with Sunday's 1-1 draw with Tottenham, lifting them three points clear of Bolton with a far superior goal difference, and the Scots has revealed that he is already looking towards next season.
"We are assessing next season. It's all been ongoing," McLeish told reporters.
"We've been assessing it every single week. We've got to start putting a plan of action in place.
"I have taken a lot of weight on my shoulders this season. I was happy to take pressure off the players. I am not going to again next season though. They had better get their finger out."
|11/2||Aston Villa are 11/2 with PaddyPower to draw 1-1 with Norwich City in their final Premier League match|
"This season we have taken the plunge into the reduction of wages. It's hopefully helped the finances a little bit," he added.
"It has put us through the mill, no doubt about it, but we're planning and we can rise. At clubs I've worked with before, with proper planning, we've done well. If I can go through that this season, I will have to have a crack at the big time and try and enhance the quality of the squad.
"At the end of the day, it's down to the players."
Although McLeish has struggled to win over Villa fans following his summer switch from rivals Birmingham, he insisted that they had been excellent despite the fact that there were again calls being made for his sacking during Sunday's match.
"I think the Villa fans in general have been excellent," he stated.
"I met some nice people at the end-of-season dinner the other night. I felt the guys I met were genuine, they knew what I was working with. If I get that kind of understanding, then great."