Martin O'Neill has praised Randy Lerner's commitment to Aston Villa and believes the American owner has been 'true to his word' in terms of his backing for the manager.
Lerner, who purchased the club from former owner Doug Ellis last September, backed O'Neill in the January transfer window and looks set to do the same again this summer.
"Has this been a reality check for Randy Lerner? Absolutely not. For somebody who was not involved in the game directly up until August, it's amazing how greatly he's realised the situation," O'Neill told the club's official website.
"He's been involved in sport with the Cleveland Browns and he is well aware of the facet of winning and losing and how difficult it is.
"It's not as if he was coming in here thinking he just had to get a club, add two players to it and suddenly take off from being not so clever to being absolutely brilliant overnight.
"In fact, it's quite the opposite. He is very, very aware of how difficult it is and I think that's half the excitement about it.
"Randy Lerner has been true to his word. He said he would be supportive and that he would prefer to stay in the background.
"He said help would be forthcoming if it was needed and I think he realises all those things.
"So everything that he's said all along, from our first meeting, he's supported it."