Eric Black claims Villa will be the Manchester United of the Championship

Aston Villa

Aston Villa are set to play in the Championship next season.

Caretaker boss Eric Black claims that Aston Villa will be like the Manchester United of the Championship when taking on teams such as Rotherham United in the second tier, the Birmingham Mail reports.

The Villans are all but resigned to relegation following a desperately poor campaign in the top flight. They sit in 20th position in the Premier League table, 15 points from safety with five games remaining.

It will be the first time Villa have played outside the top flight since the 1987-88 campaign where they earned automatic promotion at the first attempt following relegation the season before.

Villa are widely-recognised as an established club, and Black feels as a result they will be the subject of Championship clubs seeking a scalp next season in a similar mould to United.

“Aston Villa now will be like Manchester United if they go into the Championship and go to Rotherham, or wherever,” he explained to the Birmingham Mail.

“Without a doubt it will be one of the top clubs in that division but there is an awful lot of hard work required, not only between now and July 1 but throughout next season to keep it in the right direction.

“But it’s a fantastic football club and it’s a huge football club and I’m sure the club will take the right steps to get it back where it should be.”

While Villa will no doubt be attractive opposition for Championship fans next season, the second tier is full of clubs with a rich vein of history, therefore Black’s comments are somewhat ill-advised.

Sheffield Wednesday, Nottingham Forest, Derby County and Leeds United are all former English champions yet each have struggled to bounce back due to the competitive nature of the Championship.

Villa have no divine right to be in the Premier League, and in order to return there at the first attempt, they will have to make a number of correct decisions in what is expected to be a busy summer.

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch