Aston Villa striker Darren Bent admits the players have to share some responsibility for the departure of Alex McLeish but he thinks the sacking will have come as a relief for his former manager.

The Scot faced a wall of opposition from fans having been appointed from city rivals Birmingham last summer and the criticism worsened when Villa were dragged into a relegation battle. Villa's 16th-place finish, just two points above the Barclays Premier League drop zone, was their worst in six years as they returned their lowest points total (38) in 42 years.

It resulted in owner Randy Lerner taking decisive action in dispensing with McLeish's services, but Bent told the Birmingham Mail: "The players must take responsibility too, including me."

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