Dean Smith: Aston Villa sack manager after three years in charge

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Dean Smith is the fifth manager to be fired or let go in the Premier League this year

After three years of being in charge, Aston Villa has fired Dean Smith, their manager.

Smith, 50, has resigned following Villa's 1-0 defeat at Southampton on Friday. This was the fifth consecutive defeat in the Premier League.

Villa is 15th in league, two points higher than the relegation zone.

Christian Purslow, chief of Villa, stated that "this year we haven't seen the continuous improvement on results and performances as well as league position which was expected,"

He said, "For this reason, we have decided to change now to give time for a head coach to make an impression."

Villa says Smith is being replaced but that they won't rush to make an appointment immediately. However, Villa claims Denmark coach Kasperhjulmand is of interest to them and is highly regarded by Johan Lange, Villa's Sporting Director.

Hjulmand led Denmark to the Euro 2020 semifinal, where they lost to England at Wembley. The 49-year old has a growing reputation.

Villa is also considering other names, and will use the time they have due to Smith's international break to get in on Smith's successor.

Smith is the fifth Premier League manager to be fired

Smith was appointed Villa manager on October 2018. He led them to promotion in their first season.

Although they had a difficult first season in the top flight, Smith managed to lead the club to the final of the 2019-20 Carabao Cup.

Villa finished 11th in the Premier League in 2020-21, but results began to slide after Jack Grealish's departure to Manchester City this summer.

Since beating Manchester United on 25/09/09, the club has not won. They have only managed 10 points in the first 11 games.

This is their worst loss since February 2017 to February 2017 in Championship.

Smith departs the club with 28 wins in his 87 Premier League games under his command (32.2%) and a win rate of 39.6% for his 139 games.

Smith is the fifth managerial shift in the top flight this year, with Tottenham dismissing Nuno Espirito Santato on Monday and Norwich dismissing Daniel Farke late Saturday.

Xisco Munoz was fired by Watford in October. Steve Bruce, Newcastle manager, was dismissed mutually on 20 October.

Only four managerial changes were made in the entire season.

Purslow added, "The board would like Dean to be sincerely thanked for his many outstanding achievements, both on and off the pitch during this time."

"Everyone knows what Aston Villa means for Dean and his family. He represented Aston Villa with distinction and dignity. Everyone associated with Aston Villa is fondly familiar with him.

Grealish tweeted external-link: "No one will ever compare, The real goat (greatest) of all time."

Reaction - "International break is a killer in managers'

Jamie Carragher, former Liverpool defender: "Villa must've looked at someone and believed they could do better. Smith has done a great job. It used to be that if you run long without winning, it was twice as much as Villa's current position. Managers are often beaten by the international break.

Nedum Onuoha, former Manchester City defender, on BBC Radio 5 Live: "Villa’s standards have gotten high. They're losing five games in succession, and they're sinking like stones. This shouldn't happen for a team who was as ambitious as they were.

"This is their last chance before the international holiday and they have two weeks to appoint someone else; it wouldn't be the right time later in the season.

"Smith has taken them so much, it's a pity, but as far results go, they haven't done well enough."

Michael Brown, ex-Manchester City midfielder: "When Dean Smith stated at the beginning of the season that it was his expectation for a top ten finish to the season, that put pressure on him.

It's a disappointment. This is a sign of the Premier League's current level; it's getting a bit tight at the bottom.