Tim Sherwood has declared himself "very disappointed" after being relieved of his managerial duties by Premier League strugglers Aston Villa at the weekend. A 2-1 defeat to Swansea in the West Midlands on 24 October was the club's sixth in succession and sealed the 46-year-old's fate just eight months after he was chosen to succeed Paul Lambert.
Sherwood guided Villa to top-flight safety in addition to their first FA Cup final in 15 years after taking the reins last season, but the loss of key striker Christian Benteke to Liverpool proved difficult to overcome and a raft of summer signings has largely failed to lift the gloom. The former Tottenham boss departs with his assembled squad now sitting rock bottom of the table with just one victory and four points from their opening 10 league games, but he was nevertheless quick to deliver his thanks to staff and supporters.
In an official statement released by the League Managers Association (LMA), Sherwood said: "I am very disappointed that I will not be able to carry on in my role as manager of Aston Villa. I knew when I took on the role that it would be a big challenge, but it proved to be one I greatly enjoyed and I know I have learned a lot from this experience.
"Obviously, the initial priority was to stay in the Premier League, but beating Liverpool in the FA Cup semi at Wembley and then leading the team out for the final was an achievement and experience that I will treasure for the rest of my career.
"I'd like to thank my coaching staff and the staff throughout the club for their dedication, the Villa fans for their passionate support and the players, who gave everything during my time at the club. I wish the club all the best for the rest of the season and indeed for the future."
Quite where Villa go from here is not immediately obvious, although widespread reports have suggested that former Arsenal midfielder and Lyon manager Remi Garde has emerged as the clear favourite to succeed Sherwood.
Other candidates for the role at this early stage include David Moyes, Nigel Pearson, Bob Bradley, Gus Poyet and potentially even Brendan Rodgers. With assistant Ray Wilkins and first-team coach Mark Robson also out of the door, U21 chief Kevin MacDonald has been placed in temporary charge ahead of the Capital One Cup fourth round trip to Southampton on 28 October.