Aston Villa v Arsenal: Paul Lambert sends out rallying call to fans to 'stick with it' and lift the side when they take on the Gunners

Premier League leaders Arsenal visit Villa Park on Monday night and Lambert wants his side to bounce back from their shock FA Cup exit to Sheffield United last time out

Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert hopes the club's fans can “stick with it” and get behind the team in tonight's Barclays Premier League home clash with Arsenal as the midlands outfit look to bounce back from their shock FA Cup loss to Sheffield United.

The 2-1 reverse in the third-round cup tie - against Sky Bet League One opposition - was Villa's fifth defeat in their last seven games in all competitions.

And it was yet another disappointing day at Villa Park in a campaign in which their home record so far shows just two victories and six losses from 10 top-flight fixtures.

There were boos from Villa fans at the final whistle and Lambert has expressed his understanding for their frustration.

But the Scot - under whom Villa finished 15th in the Premier League last season, his first in charge of the club - has also emphasised how important he feels it is that the supporters do all they can to help the players.

"I don't have any problem with the crowd," Lambert said.

"If the team is not performing, then you expect people to vent their frustration - that is normal.

"But we are a young side.

"Last year, we played Newcastle at home and we were getting beaten 2-0 in the first half.

"Then we scored, and for about 40 minutes, it didn't matter what we did, that crowd was right with us. They were brilliant that time.

"Because you are in your second year, it might be a different view, but if they can stick with it and see us through the hard times when we need them... because we certainly need them.

"They have been excellent for us overall, and we expect if we are not performing that certain things will happen.

"But we're hoping (in the Arsenal game) that they will get right behind us."

Lambert said after a 1-1 home draw with Swansea in December that although he has a good relationship with his chairman Randy Lerner, he does not feel immune from the sack and always works with "that fear" of losing his job.

Returning to the theme this week, Lambert said: "I never stop worrying. I'm not immune from it.

"The relationship between me and Randy is what it is. You are never immune from anything, and I would never view it that way.

"You just keep going - there is no secret formula to it. You just keep going and don't lose focus on what you are trying to do. I will never waver from that."

Villa, 11th in the table, have been assessing the condition of defenders Ron Vlaar and Nathan Baker ahead of the meeting with third-placed Arsenal.

Both club captain Vlaar and Baker sat out the Sheffield United game with calf and hamstring problems respectively.

Forward Gabriel Agbonlahor, who also missed the cup tie, and goalkeeper Brad Guzan are fit despite having had niggles, but the contest is too soon for midfielder Chris Herd and defender Joe Bennett to make their comebacks after injury.

PA

Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
TV
Arts and Entertainment
James Hewitt has firmly denied being Harry’s father
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Oliver
filmTV chef Jamie Oliver turned down role in The Hobbit
News
The official police photograph of Dustin Diamond taken after he was arrested in Wisconsin
peopleDownfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Ashley Barnes of Burnley scores their second goal
footballMan City vs Burnley match report
News
news
News
Sir James Dyson: 'Students must be inspired to take up the challenge of engineering'
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
Life and Style
Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?