Garde in bullish mood despite transfer window frustration
Rémi Garde spoke of frustration at the lack of transfer activity in this window - but stressed that his "inner strength" would help him rally the troops for what he hopes will be a grandstand finish to the season.
Garde admitted that the club had been hard at work all month to bring in the several new players he wanted to spark the squad into a revival.
But he revealed he had missed out on his targets for a number of reasons.
Despite these setbacks, boss Garde has vowed to do everything in his power to help the claret and blues achieve top-flight safety.
He said: "I am disappointed. I know the team needs strengthening and improving with new players.
"Probably the main reasons we haven't been able to are that we are bottom of the league and not very attractive for players - and also because financially-speaking the club is not in the situation, probably, where they wanted to spend too much money.
"I can understand that because in the last four or five years a lot of money has been spent without big results.
"But I cannot say that the club decided not to sign players. The truth is we identified a goalkeeper - the deal was good with the club and the player. We were denied a work permit. It was a big blow that we were not expecting.
"I had a long conversation with a striker but he chose finally to sign for another team.
"It's not fair to say that we try not to sign players.
"I will do my best. I am sure the players will do the same.
"One or two new players would have been helpful for the target. But we still need to believe.
"I started my career with disappointment - not playing for two years because of a cruciate ligament injury.
"I was 18 at the time and then 18 months later I was playing for the French national team.
"I have a strength inside of me. I will cope with every situation I have to.
"I am disappointed. I am not down. I am still fighting and proud to be in this position as manager of this club.
"I don't feel like I have problems. I have a squad. I have players and I am sure they will show, despite this window, that we will still be alive."
Snap up MATCH TICKETS for Villa v Norwich.