Aston Villa chief executive Paul Faulkner has given his backing to manager Paul Lambert, as the club battle to steer clear of the Premier League relegation places.
• Hughes: Benteke breakthrough
The move to hand Lambert transfer funds in the January window provided confirmation that he still has the backing of club owner Randy Lerner, yet results need to turn quickly if Villa are to avoid being dragged into the bottom three.
Lambert’s side have won just once in their last eight matches and suffered a disappointing FA Cup exit at the hands of League One side Sheffield United earlier this month, with some of the club’s supporters venting their frustrations in the direction of the club’s manager.
Yet the Scottish coach appears to have support where he needs it at Villa Park, with Faulkner calling for calm ahead of Saturday’s trip to face an in-form Liverpool side at Anfield.
"Paul is a really good manager to work with. We have a view of where we want to try to develop and take the club forward and I think it’s one that we all share," Villa chief Faulkner is quoted in the Birmingham Mail.
"In any walk of life, if you’re in a working relationship like that it’s a good place to be and you do feel like you can get stuff done.
"We know that football is a harsh, brutal business. Lots of criticism and stick will go flying all over. Everyone’s got an opinion, everyone’s an expert and they’re entitled to that opinion and they’re entitled to that.
"Being in the middle of it you’ve got to stay very strong and together and support each other. That’s something that we are very good at doing. That makes you stronger and if you can keep doing it that allows you to actually grow and build."
Faulkner went on to suggest managers need to be given time to implement their plans, with a managerial change not always the answer to a team’s woes.
"It’s sort of like the overnight success story which takes two or three years to sort of put in place," he added. "If you don’t keep going when there’s a little bit of stick flying then you’ll never achieve anything ultimately.
"Twelve months ago we were in a really bad run and we stuck together during that and I think we saw the benefits of that during the second half of the season.
"When you’ve been through things like that together you also have a lot more faith and trust in each other."
Villa completed the loan signing of Wigan striker Grant Holt on Tuesday and are also believed to be chasing Norwich midfielder Wes Hoolahan.