Houllier was unveiled to supporters and the media last Friday, but the Frenchman immediately revealed that he would not be able to begin work because of ongoing commitments to the French Football Federation, of whom he is technical director.
Related ArticlesMacDonald forced to return to obscurityStoke City 2 Aston Villa 1Stoke City v Aston Villa: as it happenedMcAllister in pole position to join HoullierHoullier fit and ready for Villa challengeGerard Houllier held upThe 63 year-old missed Monday's 2-1 defeat at Stoke because of prior commitments in Paris. He had meetings over the first three days of the week, and there were concerns that he would be required to fulfil the three-month notice period in his contract.
The delay over Houllier's arrival has brought considerable criticism on Villa, but it has emerged that Houllier will be allowed to leave the FFF and begin work in the Midlands from the weekend. He will be in the Villa Park stands for this weekend's Premier League match against Bolton.
It comes soon after Kevin MacDonald - who will choose the team for Bolton and take up a position in the technical area - expressed his disappointment at being passed over for the managerial vacancy, and suggested that he may leave the club to further his own career.