Tim Sherwood says Aston Villa would have been relegated without Fabian Delph

Delph Jelavic Grealish Rosenior

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood speaks highly of midfielder Fabian Delph.

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood has told AVTV that the team would have been relegated from the Premier League last season had Fabian Delph not been there.

The Villans were in danger of going down to the Championship until the final weeks of the 2014-15 campaign.

In the end, Villa finished 17th in the Premier League table with 38 points from as many matches, just three points above the bottom three.

Former Tottenham Hotspur boss Sherwood has underlined the importance of Delph in Villa’s fight against the drop last season.

“Fabian is a leader,” the Englishman told AVTV. “I could go as much as to say that if Fabian wasn't with us last season we wouldn't be in the Premier League now.

"He's someone I had the ear of. He was very instrumental in what I wanted to do. He knew exactly what I wanted from the team and he drove them on.”

New season, new hopes

Both Sherwood and Delph will be determined to make sure that Villa do not get dragged into a relegation dogfight next season.

The Villans do have a good team, and with a few additions they can make a push for a top-10 finish in the Premier League for the 2015-16 campaign.

The key will be to make a strong start. If Villa pick up points in the opening games, then it will set the tone for the rest of the season.

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch