Gerard Houllier insists he would not have feared for his job in the "brutal world" of top-flight football even if Aston Villa had suffered an FA Cup upset at the hands of Sheffield United.
Houllier went into yesterday's third-round match with Villa having lost seven of their previous nine games - and in the knowledge that Roy Hodgson had just parted company with his old club Liverpool.
As it was, Houllier was left a relieved man after Villa held off a fightback by Championship strugglers Sheffield United to eventually triumph 3-1.
Houllier insisted defeat would not have made a difference to his position at Villa, saying: "I don't think whatever happened there would have been any major change. I don't think anything would have happened really."
But asked about events at Liverpool, he added: "This world has become brutal, I mean it - if you lose two games you are in the firing line."