Tuesday media watch [29.01.13 AM]: Bumper Newcastle previews
The Sun: Paul Lambert has been handed the dreaded vote of confidence by Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner. It is the first time the American has felt the need to publicly back his manager. And he chose the eve of tonight's crunch relegation battle with Newcastle to praise the Scot for having the courage to force through tough changes at the club. Lerner said: "What is clear, above all else, is his strength of character and belief in his approach to football. "Fortunes can shift quickly in this game and a sense that one has it right can become grave doubt in a matter of a few games. "Paul has achieved success at many levels of football and I believe, given support, he will continue to do so for us."
Daily Star: Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner handed boss Paul Lambert a public vote of confidence, vowing: He's the man to keep us up. Lambert, who became Villa's fourth boss in two years when he succeeded Alex McLeish last summer, has been under growing pressure after a torrid six weeks. His team have suffered embarrassing cup exits to Bradford and Millwall and sit just a point and place outside the league's bottom three. But low-profile chairman Lerner has broken his recent silence and insisted the Scot retains his backing.
Daily Star: Under-fire Paul Lambert says it's do or die for Aston Villa now - and he will not quit the club. After humiliating cup defeats to Bradford and Millwall he is back to a relegation battle with tonight's six-pointer against Newcastle. Villa are just a point above the drop zone, but after getting a vote of confidence from American owner Randy Lerner, the Scot said: "I can only try to do my best - there's no chance I would walk away."
Daily Express: Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert returns to what he calls the "relegation war" tonight with the backing of owner Randy Lerner. Lerner put his head above the trenches just 24 hours before struggling Villa take on Newcastle in a game that could be crucial in their Premier League survival bid. But Lambert is warning that even if he keeps Villa safe, there could be more pain for the next two years as he rebuilds the club to Lerner's orders.
Daily Mirror: Paul Lambert has vowed not to quit Aston Villa despite their recent nightmare run. Villa are reeling after being knocked out of the Capital One Cup and FA Cup in successive matches by lower league opposition. They were a game from Wembley until League Two Bradford dumped them out of the League Cup. Then Villa were embarrassed again at Championship Millwall where they succumbed to an 89th-minute goal. Villa return to Premier League action tonight at home to Newcastle in a crunch relegation clash. Villa have now not won in six league matches - including a club record 8-0 thrashing at Chelsea. But boss Lambert continues to have the backing of Villa's American owner Randy Lerner. And, despite mounting flak, Lambert insisted: "There is no chance I would walk away from it."
Daily Mirror: Randy Lerner has backed under fire manager Paul Lambert and insisted the Scot is the man to bring Aston Villa success. The Midlands side sit 17th in the Premier League just one point outside the relegation zone, and last week were knocked out of the Capital One Cup by League Two Bradford, and the FA Cup by Championship side Millwall. The side's struggles have seen Lambert come under pressure from supporters this season, but club owner Lerner insists he is still the man for the job.
Daily Telegraph: Paul Lambert is considering a surprise recall for Richard Dunne as his attempt to save Aston Villa from relegation becomes increasingly desperate. Lambert, who has been backed by chairman Randy Lerner ahead of Tuesday night's crucial showdown with Newcastle United, may include Dunne for the first time this season. The Republic of Ireland international has not played since Euro 2012 after struggling with hip and groin injuries but has trained for the past two weeks and is in contention for a surprise return. Villa have conceded more goals from set pieces than any other Premier League club this season and Dunne's leadership qualities and experience are viewed as crucial by Lambert.
Irish Times: Republic of Ireland international central defender Richard Dunne has been told by Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert to decide whether he can answer an SOS against Newcastle United tonight. Such is Villa's plight as they battle to avoid relegation that Lambert wants to throw in Dunne - even though he has not played since Ireland's 2-0 defeat against Italy at the European Championships last June. Dunne has had three operations since then to try and cure hip and groin problems and he has only been back in full training for two weeks. But with Villa just a point above the relegation zone after taking two points from their last six matches and having conceded 27 goals in their last 10 league and cup games, Lambert needs the experience of Dunne at the centre of his defence.
Daily Telegraph: Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner has finally broken his silence and insisted manager Paul Lambert is the right man for the club. Lerner has reiterated his full support for the struggling Villa manager and believes he has the qualities to guide the club away from relegation trouble. Lambert is under serious pressure after securing only four Premier League wins all season, with his tenure hitting its lowest point last week when his team were knocked out of both cup competitions by lower league opposition. Villa's American owner has also been heavily criticised in recent weeks as it appears unlikely money will be spent in this January transfer window to remedy the situation while he was absent for Villa's Capital One Cup semi-final against Bradford. But Lerner has released a rare public statement to back Lambert ahead of Tuesday night's crucial showdown with Newcastle United.
Guardian: Aston Villa's out-of-favour defender Alan Hutton is on the verge of a move to Real Mallorca. The Scotland international has not featured for the Midlands club this season but is poised to end his frustration with a move to Spain on an initial loan deal, pending a medical. Villa confirmed on their website that the full-back will remain with the Balearic Islands side until the end of the season with a view to a permanent deal being concluded over the summer.
Independent: Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert has stressed he "won't walk away" from the club's desperate battle for Barclays Premier League survival ahead of tomorrow's crunch home clash with fellow strugglers Newcastle. Lambert has the task of picking up his players after back-to-back cup defeats against lower league Bradford and Millwall in the space of 72 hours. The Scot admits he has not experienced a run like the one currently on by Villa - two points from the last six games and the double cup blow - during his managerial career. But he has already received the backing of club owner Randy Lerner and insists he is ready for the battles ahead. When asked if there was any chance he would quit, Lambert said: "No. I can only do, or try to do my best. There's no chance I'd walk away from it.
Guardian: Villa chairman, Randy Lerner, has backed the club's manager, Paul Lambert, to reshape the squad and to reverse their poor form. However he added that, while the manager and the board have discussed transfer targets, none of them have come to fruition. Villa suffered back-to-back cup defeats against lower league Bradford and Millwall in the space of 72 hours and have taken only two points from their past six league games. They have been struggling with a young squad too and Lerner admits it is "frustrating" they have not made any signings.
Independent: Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner has reiterated his support for manager Paul Lambert ahead of tomorrow's crunch Barclays Premier League clash with fellow strugglers Newcastle. Lerner, the American entrepreneur who has invested £250m in Villa since buying the club in 2006, gave his last formal press conference in 2010 and has not agreed to be interviewed by an English football writer since 2011. Yet the mounting pressure on Villa manager Paul Lambert following the ignominy of two cup defeats in four days to lower-league opponents has prompted Lerner to break his silence by reaffirming his backing for the beleaguered Scot.
Birmingham Mail: Paul Lambert admits Newcastle new boy Moussa Sissoko is a player Villa were priced out of signing because of their prudent spending policy. The French midfielder was on Lambert's wanted list, but the claret and blues were forced to withdraw from the chase for financial reasons. Instead Sissoko joined the Magpies and the he could make his debut against Villa in tonight's survival six-pointer at Villa Park.
Birmingham Mail: Shay Given will not be allowed to out on loan despite Villa's cup calamities denying him first team football. Boss Paul Lambert put the block on Given joining Championship club Hull in a temporary deal earlier this season. And Lambert wants the veteran keeper to stay and provide cover and competition for first choice Brad Guzan.
Sky Sports: Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert has confirmed striker Andreas Weimann has opened talks about a new contract. Weimann has scored nine goals in twenty-four appearances this season and has been one of the few positives in a dismal campaign for Villa. The Austrian international still has 18 months to run on his current deal but Villa hope he will remain as part of the rebuilding process under Lambert.
*The extracts on this page are taken from various newspapers and media outlets. They do not necessarily reflect the views of Aston Villa.