By Blake Welton
Last Updated: 24/07/20 10:40am
Aston Villa boss Dean Smith insists his side will being ‘going all out’ to beat West Ham United this weekend to guarantee their Premier League survival.
Victory over Arsenal on Tuesday evening meant Villa moved out of the relegation zone, sitting level on points with 18th-placed Watford but with a one-goal advantage.
It means Villa’s Premier League status is in their own hands as they travel to face West Ham in Sunday’s final round of fixtures while Watford are at Arsenal.
And although Smith will keep an on eye on results elsewhere, he is not prepared to take any risks by looking to rely on others doing his side a favour.
On the final day permutations, Dean Smith said: “It means we control our own destiny and that’s what we wanted to have going into the last game.
“It was looking unlikely a few weeks ago but we won games and other results went our way so we’ve ended up above the dotted line at the moment.
“But the most important thing is to be above that dotted line after Sunday’s games.
“Our entire focus will be on trying to beat West Ham, we will be going all out to win.
“We can’t think about other matches because we are not in control of them but we will be mindful come the last 10, 15 minutes because it can change the game.”
‘It’s tournament football – and Villa are good at that’
After nine matches in a hectic five-week period, Aston Villa’s Premier League status comes down to just one game.
Smith has readily classed the post-Lockdown fixtures as ‘tournament football’ – something his side have been adept at over the past 12 months.
“We’ve been good in the cup competitions, getting to the League Cup final and winning the Play-Off final last season,” Smith added.
“So we’ve got some knowledge and feeling of how it is going to be on Sunday but we still have to be mindful of other games as well and we have a few What If scenarios in our minds to react to.”
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