Christian Benteke
Christian Benteke has been the driving force behind Aston Villa's successful survival bid under Tim Sherwood.Getty Images

Tim Sherwood claims he is convinced that Christian Benteke wants to remain at Aston Villa as the striker continues to attract attention from the likes of Liverpool and Chelsea.

Much like his club, Belgian international Benteke laboured badly during the first half of the 2014/15 season under Paul Lambert yet appears to have received a new lease of life since the latter was relieved of his duties and replaced by former Tottenham boss Sherwood in February.

A run of nine goals in just eight domestic fixtures, including a hat-trick in the pulsating 3-3 draw against Queens Park Rangers, has helped propel Villa to Premier League safety and a first FA Cup final for 15 years as well providing a timely reminder of the 24-year-old's obvious ability.

Such a devastating sequence certainly does not appear to have gone unnoticed and transfer rumours have been particularly frequent over recent weeks, suggesting that both Brendan Rodgers and José Mourinho retain a keen interest in acquiring Benteke.

Liverpool are almost certain to be left searching for fresh impetus in the final third this summer with Daniel Sturridge currently recovering from hip surgery following a frustrating campaign persistently interrupted by injury and strong doubts continuing to persist over the future of Raheem Sterling.

The trio of Mario Balotelli, Rickie Lambert and Fabio Borini do not provide much by way of reliable long-term quality, meanwhile, while champions Chelsea will also likely weigh up the addition of an extra forward in the coming months with Diego Costa proving especially susceptible to hamstring problems and Didier Drogba's one-year contract set to expire in June.

Despite this mounting speculation, however, the relentlessly positive Sherwood believes that Benteke is not seeking a move away from Villa Park.

"I have no reason to think he is seeking employment elsewhere," he was quoted as saying by the Mirror.

"I am convinced he wants to be at this club."

Understandably keen not to lose any key players in a bid ensure that Villa do not struggle for survival once again next season, Sherwood also expressed hope over the future of former captain Ron Vlaar.

The Dutch centre-back, previously a target for Louis van Gaal's Manchester United both in the aftermath of the 2014 World Cup and during the January transfer window, was widely expected to depart this summer with his deal winding down yet it appears negotiations regarding a possible extension are progressing well.

"I've told Ron I want him to stay and he's said he wants to," Sherwood added.

"So his representatives are going to talk to the club and I'm confident something can be done. Are we close? Well, put it this way, we're not a million pounds away."