Villa must stick together to avoid drop – Mings

Aston Villa

Aston Villa defender Tyrone Mings has called on the squad to stick together as they continue to battle against relegation.

Villa ended their three season exile from the top-flight by winning promotion through the play-offs last season.

Dean Smith was handed the cheque book to reinforce his squad but they have struggled to string together a consistent run and are in serious danger of relegation.

Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Southampton was the third loss in a row for Villa and leaves them sitting 17th and just one point above the drop zone.

West Ham are in 18th and could move ahead of Villa on Monday if they pull off a major shock by beating champions elect Liverpool at Anfield.

Smith didn’t hold back in his criticism of Villa’s performance on Saturday, questioning their commitment as they failed to register a single shot on target.

He admitted to feeling “embarrassed” and claimed some of his players could be dropped for Sunday’s League Cup final against Manchester City.

With just 11 games left to play, Villa need to step up in order to prolong their stay at the highest level.

Mings, who has been one of the club’s top performers, is confident they have the tools to avoid the drop but insists they must stick together through this difficult period.

“We’re in a relegation battle and the minimum requirement is to fight and battle and we didn’t do that,” Mings said.

“We’ll figure it out behind closed doors. The last thing we need to do now is fracture and lose faith in each other, so we’ll prepare for the League Cup final and it might be a welcome distraction from the league.”

Villa face a tricky run of results in the Premier League following Sunday’s trip to Wembley with games against Leicester and Chelsea before the international break in March.