McLeish takes criticism on the chin
Alex McLeish insists he can still win over the Aston Villa supporters despite their vitriolic abuse hitting new heights this week.
The Scot has been targeted by fans over the course of this season with criticism worsening in recent weeks, as Tuesday's 2-1 defeat by Bolton left the side three points off the Barclays Premier League bottom three.
Supporters are planning further protests for Villa's home match against Tottenham on May 6, but first McLeish must take his side to local rivals West Brom on Saturday hoping to earn a result which could go some way to determining their future.
He said: "In terms of the abuse, there was nobody more disappointed after the Bolton game than me. I was absolutely gutted. I'm telling you, I don't care what any supporter says, there was nobody who felt as bad as I did going off that pitch.
"I don't criticise the fans for having a go or booing at the end of a game, when it's another home game we've lost and defeat was snatched from the jaws of victory, in what was a blooming good performance. We definitely deserved more but we didn't get it and it's left us with a battle for the next nine points."
Asked how the fans' abuse affects his family on nights like Tuesday, McLeish said: "Yes, my son was there, my wife was there, my family were there. It's part of the game, I accept it. It's something that they have grown up with as well. It's part of football and it's not something you can change. You have to accept it. If you don't want to hear that, don't be in this game."