O'Leary: We Got Our Pride Back

Last updated : 28 January 2004 By Paul Doherty
The Villa boss felt that the side made-up for the disappointing defensive display in the first leg of the semi-final last week. The 5-2 defeat at the Reebok ultimately proving too big a deficit to pull back.

"I felt we got our pride back. We went down to ten men and then played them off the pitch," O'Leary said after the 2nd leg at Villa Park.

"They were hanging on at the very end and I was proud of our boys. They are a good bunch, a small bunch, who I am having to ask to play all the time and they have given their all.

"It's been a bonus to even get to a semi-final, because the agenda here this season has been to reduce the wage bill and there will be another five people going on free transfers at the end of the season.

"Now the fight is to stay in the Premiership and we will have a big fight on our hands."