Downing happy with underdog tag

28 April 2010 08:39
Winger Stewart Downing insists Aston Villa are happy to be regarded as underdogs in the battle for a Champions League spot.[LNB] Martin O'Neill's side looked out of contention after losing 7-1 at Chelsea last month and much of the focus has been on Tottenham and Manchester City in the scrap for fourth place in the Premier League.[LNB]But Villa have responded to that mauling at Stamford Bridge by taking 13 points from the last 15 to move level on points with Tottenham, although they have played a game more.[LNB]They take on Roberto Mancini's side at Eastlands on Saturday before ending the campaign with a home game against Blackburn.[LNB]Downing said: "Saturday is a big game. With the way everyone has been going on, they're expecting Tottenham or Man City to get that fourth place and nobody has said anything about us.[LNB]"I think it suits us being regarded as underdogs because we'll just carry on winning games and picking up points and trying to creep in through that back door.[LNB]"Manchester City have obviously spent a lot of money on big players and it's been the same with Tottenham. They've had a good go as well for fourth place.[LNB]"But we've a good team and we've played consistently well. We've had a good season, got to a cup final and cup semi-final, but we'd like to finish if off by getting that fourth spot.[LNB]"Now we've got two big games left and we have to try and finish the job off."[LNB]Downing insists Villa will not be fazed by the weekend clash with City, whose first-choice keeper Shay Given will miss the remainder of the season through injury.[LNB]He said: "We play quite well on the counter-attack when we're away from home. It's going to be a massive game but one we look forward to.[LNB]"It's unfortunate for Shay getting that injury but it's a chance for another keeper to come in.[LNB]"They've got good players all around, they've got a good squad - but we're not afraid of them."

Source: Team_Talk