Villa boss O’Neill shrugs off Man Utd, England talk

Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill has shrugged off the plaudits coming his way.

Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill has shrugged off the plaudits coming his way.

O'Neill has been mentioned as a successor for both Sir Alex Ferguson's job at Manchester United and Fabio Capello with England.

"You're never sure what an outside opinion is," he told the Daily Mail. "But it's still pretty tough to win Premier League games here.

"The top teams can win football games even when they go through difficult spells in a game. They hang in because they have players who can keep the ball. We are getting better at retaining the ball. Because we are getting better footballers. We're a better side than we were two seasons ago."

They are a much better team with a manager who has complete control.

"Having grown up as a player and worked under a great manager like Brian Clough, my view is that you have to have control," he said. "If a manager doesn't have control of a club he won't have anything.

"Eventually the responsibility falls on your shoulders. What is the point letting other people make decisions for you if you get the blame?

"The job has changed. Where it's different since my day as a player, is that the manager was in control and the players had little control. Now it's gone the other way."