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O'Neill now targets fourth place
26 Apr 2010 - 09:00:27
Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill is hoping for a Champions League boost following confirmation of European qualification for the Midlands club.
Sunday's 1-0 derby victory over Birmingham City following a controversial late penalty from James Milner assured Villa of at least seventh spot in the final Premier League table and a place in next season's Europe League.
Fourth place in the Premier League and a spot in the Champions League is still a possibility if Villa can overcome sixth-placed Manchester City next weekend and then hope that Spurs, currently in fourth, slip up in their three remaining games.
O'Neill has admitted that fourth place is a long shot but is refusing to give up hope of a first ever season in Europe's premier club competition.
"It was a major win, a major win and I am delighted for the team," he said with Villa now are level on 64 points with Spurs but having played one game more than the north London club.
"We have qualified for Europe as a result of winning, we can't finish any worse than seventh. And with two games to go we are still in the mix.
"Now we can go into these last two days of the season and give it absolutely everything.
"Manchester City will be exceptionally hard but we're going there and we're going to have to try and win."