Sherwood cites Sandro example as hope for Aston Villa's outcasts

Tim Sherwood Press Conference 12/02/2014

Everyone in the Aston Villa squad will get a chance to prove their worth moving forward, says new boss Tim Sherwood.

New Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood has stressed to the club’s official website that no bridges will ever be burnt during his time in the West Midlands, citing the example of his relationship with Sandro at Tottenham Hotspur.

Taking over from Andre Villas-Boas for the second half of last season, Sherwood opted to drop regular starter Sandro from his squad during his first 11 games in charge, with bad blood said to have been lingering between the pair.

However, the Brazilian midfielder was later given a second chance during the final stretch of the campaign after impressing in training, with Sherwood adding that he will be taking the exact same approach at Villa.

"There won't be anyone who is not included in my plans. It's a fresh start for everyone,” he said. "Whether the previous manager liked them or he didn't, it doesn't matter to me.

"It's a jigsaw you put together when you pick a team and you look at the opposition and think: 'Is this going to give us the best opportunity to win?’

"You have to leave out a lot of players doing that but that doesn't mean they're finished. Sandro was a good example of that at Tottenham.

"We played Villa in the final game of last season. Everyone was talking about how I had a big fall out with him but I never burnt any bridges with any players. Never.

"There was always a chance that I would bring him back and put him in the team and I brought him back for that game because I was worried about the counter attacking threat of Gabby Agbonlahor.

"So I pushed the full-backs on and played Sandro in the pivot role and he did the job for me and got a standing ovation coming off after 75 minutes.”

Sherwood’s words will no doubt come as welcome news to the likes of Charles N’Zogbia, Leandro Bacuna and Jack Grealish, who all found their first-team opportunities limited under the since-departed Paul Lambert over recent months, despite the team’s attacking struggles.

All will now have a clean slate ahead of the weekend’s visit of Stoke, however, as the ex-Spurs boss looks to pull his club out of a relegation scrap with 13 Premier League games remaining.

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