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Garde refuses to blame Guzan for costly Villa defeat

Aston Villa manager Remi Garde refused to criticise goalkeeper Brad Guzan for the mistake at Swansea City that saw his side slump to a sixth consecutive defeat on Saturday.

The American unsuccessfully tried to claim Gylfi Sigurdsson's free-kick eight minutes after the break, allowing Federico Fernandez to bundle home the only goal of the game and leave Villa cut adrift at the bottom of the Premier League.

It will come as a blow to the confidence of Guzan, who only recently won his place in the side back from Mark Bunn, but Garde was reluctant to blame his keeper.

He said: "I'm not criticising or assessing a player after a game it's never the time to do it would prefer to have a chat with the players before.

"Brad will go for the next international break away and we will have time to digest that and he will come back stronger."

The result leaves Villa 12 points adrift of safety at the bottom of the table with seven games left, although they were unlucky not to take the lead after a bright first half that saw chances for Joleon Lescott, Jordan Ayew and Rudy Gestede.

Garde was left to bemoan his side's lack of cutting edge.

He added: I think we controlled the game especially in the first half and had some good periods but without scoring in those periods you will always have a tough time in the second half.

"I think they only had one shot on goal and they scored and that's very hard to take.

"We could have been more accurate in forward positions, but I thought we played quite well in the middle of the pitch but not in the two boxes."