Paul Lambert has revealed he offered to resign as Aston Villa manager after missing out on targets such as Romelu Lukaku and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Villa sacked Lambert in February 2015 after the club had dropped into the Premier League’s relegation zone having scored only 12 goals in 25 matches.
But the Scot, who is now manager of Blackburn Rovers, says he tried to leave the club in the summer of 2014 after being left frustrated by a lack of backing in the transfer market.
“I offered to resign at the end of my second season at Villa Park. I knew I wasn’t going to get money to spend so I thought, ‘ok, let me resign then’,” he told the Daily Express.
“Randy Lerner said, ‘No.’ He wouldn’t accept it. I knew that the club needed big players to come in and we couldn’t go and get them. I remember speaking to (Romelu) Lukaku when I first went there.
“I spoke to (Wilfried) Bony in one window. I actually spoke to an agent from France about (Pierre-Emerick) Aubameyang now at Dortmund. He was at St Etienne and we made contact.
“It was players like that that I wanted to try and bring in but we were never going to get them. It is a brilliant club but I always think a team that has won the European Cup should not be in the position it is in.
“I had had enough because I was taking the hit for everyone and there were only so many hits I was willing to take before I came back fighting. So the easiest thing for me was to say, ‘nae problem. I’ll go, nae problem.’
“But he (Lerner) said, ‘no, no’ and there were so many things going on. (There was talk of) a takeover, things were going back and forth but I did offer to resign after my second year.”