Barclays Premier League
By Dan Harrison
Buoyant Alex McLeish goes into his first competitive game as Villa boss insisting he has worked to his "maximum" to make sure his players are ready for the new campaign.
McLeish cannot wait to take charge of his first top-flight game as claret and blues chief when he takes his team to Fulham this afternoon.
He has been delighted with the way preparations for the new campaign have gone since beign appointed at the beginning of July.
Asked if he had "put in a bit extra" during pre-season because of the circumstances of his arrival, McLeish replied: "I've got to say I am not capable of giving any extra.
"Ever since I've donned a professional football jersey as a player and as a manager I've given 110 per cent in everything I've done.
"You could offer me a £50m bonus and it wouldn't make me try any harder because I'm already working to my maximum."
The Scotsman has been thrilled with the good will he has received from Villa supporters - but hopes to create even more fan fervour by guiding the team to a dream start.
"I know that it is a results business," he said.
"We are all in that business and we have to get results and that is the bottom line.
"I've had some good will from the Villa fans that I've met in the street and I know I'll get even more good will if we win football matches."
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