Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill dipped into his own pocket to lay on a lavish £15,000 banquet tonight for disgruntled fans - and even hired a comedian to cheer them up.

O'Neill has received a lot of flak from supporters over his controversial decision to field a severely weakened team as they crashed out of the UEFA Cup.

He has responded by personally buying a three-course meal and drinks for all fans who purchased a ticket for their last 32 second leg at CSKA Moscow.

The Villa manager's backroom staff and several first-team stars, including skipper Martin Laursen are expected to attend. O'Neill has helped organise the event and plans to address the fans as he is sticking by his decision in Russia, says the Mirror.