Aston Villa are reportedly set to part company with Remi Garde this week, and it is a decision that will likely be welcomed by the club’s supporters.
Although the frustration and anger has been directed at the club’s hierarchy as opposed to the manager for the most part, the Frenchman’s inability to improve the situation at Villa Park since his arrival earlier in the season has been disappointing.
Several national papers have claimed that he will be sacked in the next 48 hours, as reported by Sky Sports, with new Villa chairman Steve Hollis pressing ahead with changes ready for next season in the Championship.
Villa remain rooted to the bottom of the Premier League table having collected just 16 points from 30 games this season, and they are now 12 points adrift of safety with eight games remaining.
Garde has had little help in the way of reinforcements to at least try and push the club in the right direction, with owner Randy Lerner and his colleagues coming under increasing criticism from supporters with protests seen at the stadium.
However, since taking over from Tim Sherwood in November last year, Garde has lost 12 of his 20 league games in charge and has won just two in that period.
That is simply not good enough for a team of Villa’s history and size, and although the squad is evidently lacking quality this year, the lack of passion and determination has been noted by many, including Villa hero Dwight Yorke who has insisted that he wants to lead the rebuild next season, as noted by The Daily Mail.
While he would certainly be a sentimental option given his success with the club during his playing days, Villa need experience next season with a manager who knows what it takes to bring a big club back up into the Premier League.
The number of available coaches of that calibre is low, with Nigel Pearson arguably the best bet given he has been out of work since leaving Leicester City last season.
Nevertheless, what is clear at this stage is that Garde is not the man to lead Villa back into the English top flight next season, and if the club want to avoid slipping further into the abyss, they need to make a change now and start the process of preparing for life in the Championship with a view of coming straight back up.