Paul Lambert says he is hopeful of "building something special" at Villa.
Lambert accepts Villa must first get over the line in the fight to escape the drop, saying his side have "put themselves in a right good position" ahead of the final two games of the campaign.
But looking long-term, Lambert insists his team are on an upward curve, with the adversity faced in the festive period standing the players in good stead for the future.
Lambert opted for a philosophy on arrival in June 2012 of bringing through young, hungry players coupled with experienced pros to make-up an emerging line-up.
Despite the dark days against the likes of this weekend's opponents Chelsea, Lambert stresses he has never thought about deviating from that course.
And he believes the support of chairman Randy Lerner along with chief executive Paul Faulkner has been a source of great solace throughout the tough term.
But the boss can see brighter days on the horizon.
He said: "I think progress has been made.
"What we had to do when we first came into this club was do what we've done.
"Someone somewhere had to go 'this is what we're going to do.' If it hadn't been me, it would have been someone else.
"It was the decision Ian, Gary and I decided to take and the route we were going to go down.
"We thought, no matter what, we don't deviate from it, we stick with it.
"The lads have got better with every game and the crowd have been right with it. They are identifying with the team and getting right behind them. No-one can say we're boring that's for sure.
"All credit must go to the team for the results they have produced over the past few months.
"They have been absolutely outstanding for doing it when everyone wrote them off and had a go at them.
"They deserve credit. They are playing really well.
"But we had to believe in what we were doing and stick with it regardless of what other people outside of here thought."
Lambert paid tribute to the claret and blue masses for staying with the team.
It's been a constant source of inspiration for Lambert to hear the crowd singing from the stands even in the most difficult of circumstances.
He added: "The crowd have been with it - the crowd and the players. They have been doing everything they can to get the results for us.
"Thankfully it's been working of late. Now we have to get over the line. That's first and foremost.
"We have put ourselves in a right good position. Hopefully we can get through it.
"You do have to go through hard times in football to come through it. You have to feel that adversity. It will be the making of you. Sometimes you have to go through these things because it will make you stronger.
"The fans have been absolutely fantastic. Some of the supporters might have walked away from it when we were having a hard time around that Christmas period.
"Thankfully the chairman stuck with it and the chief executive too and they have offered constant support.
"You have to have that support. If you look up and down the country, you see the clubs who are successful and they have stability.
"If you have the belief the manager is doing right why not give them the time to do it. I am not saying this because I'm here.
"You look at the best manager, he's just retired and he's had 26 years of it.
"His initial period was hard as was Martin O'Neill at Leicester. It can be really tough when you don't get off to a great start but you need people at the top who stick with it. Thankfully, that's what happened.
"I am just here. We are building things here that hopefully will be special. We have a terrific foothold.
"I saw a terrific compliment from Sir Alex Ferguson the other week that we are building a young side that can really do something.
"We will try to keep building the football club and take it where we want to take it."
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