Saturday media watch [16.01.16]
Birmingham Mail: Rémi Garde reckons Villa's scenario is simple - just 'copy and paste' Leicester City's achievements! This time last year the Foxes were bottom of the Premier League but an end-of-season turnaround saved them from the drop and their momentum has since continued. While Garde knows their incredible story will be almost impossible to replicate, he does still believe they can take inspiration from Saturday's evening's opponents.
Daily Mail: Rémi Garde used laptop imagery to plot how Aston Villa might escape relegation — telling his players to copy and paste Leicester's miracle survival from last season. The Villa manager knows the chances of emulating the feat are remote but believes that the win over Crystal Palace on Tuesday shows spirit for a fight remains. Bottom-club Villa have 11 points from 21 games, eight points below 17th place. Leicester were also bottom this time last season, though with six points more, before recovering to finish 14th. "I would like to copy and paste that!" said Garde.
Daily Star: Boss Rémi Garde wants Aston Villa to copy Leicester's blueprint for a great escape. Garde says Villa can nick the methods used by tomorrow's opponents to transform the fortunes of his ailing club. Villa want a similar turnaround to the Foxes, who were rock bottom a year ago yet escaped relegation and start tomorrow level on points with Premier League leaders Arsenal. Garde's men are propping up the table with 11 points and sit eight points off safety.
Daily Express: Rémi Garde says Aston Villa want to "copy and paste" Leicester's great escape to save themselves from Premier League relegation. Garde reckons Villa must copy today's opponents if they are to save themselves from dropping into the Championship. Villa appear doomed after picking up just 11 points from 21 games, but Leicester upset the odds last season by winning seven of their last nine games to stay up. They have since made a stunning start to this season and will return to the top of the League with victory at Villa Park. "I would like to copy and paste that!" said Garde, whose team picked up a priceless win over Crystal Palace on Tuesday.
Daily Mirror: Marc Albrighton says it is "horrible" to see boyhood club Aston Villa's plight but plans to show no mercy as Leicester aim to continue their remarkable season. Villa and Midlands rivals City have had extraordinary contrasting seasons with Claudio Ranieri's side chasing the title and Rémi Garde's men propping up the Premier League. Villa won their first home game of the season on Tuesday 1-0 against Crystal Palace to give themselves a glimmer of hope. They are taking inspiration from the Foxes beating the odds last season to go from bottom at Christmas to safety with seven wins from their last nine matches. But despite admitting feeling sorry for his former club, City winger Albrighton, 26, will show no sentiment today back at Villa Park.
Birmingham Mail: Marc Albrighton is saddened by Aston Villa's demise and he hopes his former club can eclipse the achievements of his current side Leicester City by breaking free from the drop zone. The ex-claret and blue winger will line up for the Foxes at Villa Park hoping to see off the basement boys and continue his unlikely search for a Premier League winners medal. He admits that a top four finish would be a remarkable achievement, but the perfect season would only include survival for his beloved boyhood club, Villa.
Daily Star: Lifelong Aston Villa fan Marc Albrighton could spark a family row if he piles more misery on his former club. The 26-year-old Leicester winger was brought up in claret and blue and, even though Villa released him three years ago, he takes no pleasure in witnessing their current struggle. It's ironic that Albrighton, considered surplus to requirements by the floundering bottom club, is now riding high at the top of the table with The Foxes. He returns to Villa Park with Leicester still right in the thick of the title race and chasing European football next season.
Independent: Aston Villa defender Joleon Lescott has been the subject of a surprise offer from Los Angeles Galaxy, according to Sky Sports. The MLS club have allegedly tabled a three-year contract for the 33-year-old, who only moved to Villa Park last September. Lescott has made 16 appearances for the West Midlands club since completing his £2m transfer from nearby West Bromwich Albion, but there has been little to celebrate during a tough campaign that currently sees Villa seven points adrift at the foot of the Premier League. However, Lescott did score the winning goal as Rémi Garde's team ended a run of 19 matches without victory by beating Crystal Palace 1-0 on Tuesday.
Best of the Rest
BBC Sport: Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal "cannot imagine" it will take the club 26 years to become champions again. United went that long before winning the league under Sir Alex Ferguson in 1993, a barren run Liverpool will equal if they fail to finish top this season.
Sky Sports: Newcastle have entered talks with Tottenham over the possibility of signing Andros Townsend. Townsend, who was dropped from the first team for two weeks in November after a bust-up with fitness coach Nathan Gardiner, has not featured for Spurs since October 22.
BBC Sport: Relegation is a possibility for Chelsea, says the Premier League champions' interim boss Guus Hiddink. The Blues are 14th in the top flight, six points off the bottom three, and their next two league games are at home to Everton and away to Arsenal.
*The extracts on this page are taken from various newspapers and media outlets. They do not necessarily reflect the views of Aston Villa.