Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill has no complaints over his side's busy schedule this season as he sees it as a side-effect of their success.
As well as hanging on the coat-tails of the Premier League's "Big Four", Villa are also going strong in the UEFA Cup this season, meaning important games are coming round every couple of days for the club.
Sunday's 2-1 setback against Middlesbrough may have been seen by some as part of the hangover following a trip to Prague three days earlier, but O'Neill insists long journeys in Europe are precisely what he wanted for the club when he joined and told AVTV: "This is where we want to be. We want to be playing European football after Christmas - we have given ourselves a great chance of that."
He added: "We want to be striving in the Premier League, matching the top teams and surpassing our efforts from last season.
"We want to do all those things but it's hard. You get knocked back a few times and then you have to raise yourself up again and really go for it. That's the nature of the season."
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