Scott Sinclair addresses criticism of the Aston Villa players

The 27-year-old winger and his teammates have been under severe scrutiny over recent months for their perceived lack of commitment.

Aston Villa winger Scott Sinclair has insisted to AVTV that he and his teammate have been giving 100 percent this season despite the ongoing questions about their commitment.

Villa’s relegation after 28 years in the top-flight was officially confirmed on Saturday afternoon when Marcus Rasford’s first-half strike saw them slump to a 1-0 defeat at Manchester United.

It was the ninth consecutive loss for the Premier League bottom-dwellers and leaves them 15 points from safety with just four games left, having recorded only three wins and scored a division-low 23 goals in their 34 matches.

While owner Randy Lerner has received plenty of blame for their miserable campaign, the club’s senior players have not escaped criticism either and fans and the media alike have been quick to suggest that some of them have not been pulling their weight over recent months amid a growing number of uninspiring performances.

Nevertheless, while Sinclair fully accepts their displays have simply not been good enough, he stresses that everyone has been fighting hard to try to turn things around.

“It’s such a shame where we are, but one thing I can say is that the boys have been fighting hard and we always give it 100 percent,” Sinclair told AVTV prior to the United loss. “We’ve gone through a real bad sticky patch where we’re not getting results and things haven’t gone our way.

“As a football fan myself when I was a young kid, you look up to all these players and you think, ‘Are they giving it 100 percent?’ – You question that, but we give it 100 percent, just things haven’t gone our way with conceding goals and not winning games.

“But I can understand the fan’s frustrations towards us because we’re not getting results.”

Sinclair, 27, originally joined Villa on loan from Manchester City in January 2015 before securing a permanent move last summer and has since made 40 total appearances for the club, scoring nine goals in the process.

The former Swansea City star made a hot start to this this season by following up a hat-trick display in August’s 5-3 Capital One Cup win over Notts County with a brace in the subsequent 2-2 league draw with Sunderland, but he has added just one more goal to his record over the rest of the campaign and been in and out of the line-up.

Despite his struggles at City, the pacey attacker believes that the past few months have probably been the toughest time of his career, but he is nevertheless eager to be part of the rebuilding effort in the Championship.

“I’d say so, and it’s the same for a lot of the boys,” Sinclair told AVTV when asked whether this was the most difficult period of his career. “A lot of them have never been in this sort of situation.

“At this moment in time, we just have to take each step as it comes and whatever happens in the future we’ll deal with it then.”

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch