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Is a title challenge possible for Man Utd?

Manchester United
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By ESPN Staff

Aitken ready to lead Villa until whenever

Aston Villa caretaker-manager Roy Aitken insists he is ideally equipped to lead the crisis-torn Midlands giants 'until further notice'.

Villa are currently entrenched in turmoil with chairman Doug Ellis set to continue negotiations with American billionaire Randy Lerner over a possible £57million takeover.

But former Aberdeen boss Aitken is refusing to rule himself out of the running for the post on a permanent basis.

Last night he guided Villa to their second pre-season win - a 2-0 win at Hull courtesy of goals from Steven Davies and Craig Gardner.

'I'm in a situation where as far as I'm concerned, I've been asked to take on the job until further notice,' said the 48-year-old Scot.

'All the other distractions don't really affect me because I'm long enough in the tooth to know what football's all about.

'This is a great job and you do it to the best of your ability. That's what I'm trying to do and I'm getting a good response from the players.'

Aitken has taken temporary charge at Villa Park since David O'Leary's departure and, with the Premiership season looming, could be in charge for the start of the new campaign. Significantly, he has quickly acclimatised to the role, having guided Villa to a 5-0 thumping of Walsall last Friday and last night's win at the KC Stadium.

'From my point of view the players have always responded well to me on the training ground, and I'm just carrying it on from there,' added Aitken, who was brought to Villa Park from Leeds as O'Leary's assistant.

'I always enjoyed being the manager and I'm enjoying the extra responsibility which this role brings.

'What I have done since I was last a manager [at Aberdeen] is gain experience.

'I went abroad to Dubai for a year and then came to work for Leeds where I was involved with the Champions League campaign.

'I was obviously dealing with big players there as well and then coming to Villa and stepping up again in the role of assistant manager.

'I'm getting experience all the time and have now got my Pro Licence, so all these things help.'