Aston Villa owner Tony Xia looking to forget the past and appoint former Birmingham boss

The only slight stumbling block with some is the fact that he is a former manager of hated rivals Birmingham.

But that was nine years ago and he has been at Wigan, Sunderland and Hull since so his connection bears no similarity to when Alex McLeish moved across the city in 2011, having just got Birmingham relegated.

Di Matteo was living on borrowed time for the past few weeks and his fate was sealed after Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Preston.

The Italian’s seemingly aloof and carefree methods began to concern Xia while some players began to question exactly what he was doing at the club.

No.2 Steve Clarke has been put in temporary charge while Xia and chief executive Keith Wynass set about getting a new man lined up during the international break.

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