Former Birmingham City manager Gary Rowett has backed Aston Villa to make it into the Championship top six this season.
As per the Sunday People, 24/03, page 50, Rowett has backed the bitter rivals of one of his former clubs to make it into the play-offs, just a year after finishing sixth in the second tier himself.
Rowett said: “For me, it’s very difficult to look at anything other than Villa at the moment. They’re now in the top six and I think they can improve on that.
“They have had the firepower all season in the likes of Tammy Abraham. They’ve stopped conceding so many goals and when you’ve got that balance right, the results are going to flow. They’ve got a real chance.”
Rowett knows what it takes to get into that top six, and he is right to praise the way that Dean Smith has improved Villa’s defensive work.
But it is easy to just look at the team in possession of the spot. There are some fantastic teams and Rowett’s old club Derby cannot be discounted, along with Bristol City, who have been so good again this term.
There are still plenty of twists and turns to be had between now and the end of the season, and Villa must maintain that defensive solidity if they want to have any chance.