Friedel - O'Neill is our Fergie

Veteran US international hails O'Neill approach

O'Neill: Authority

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Aston Villa goalkeeper Brad Friedel says Martin O'Neill has the same kind of authority at the club as Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United.

Ferguson has long held a reputation for having complete control of all events at Old Trafford and that is considered to be a key aspect of his success as a manager.

And Friedel, who has played for a number of clubs in his long career, believes it is impossible to succeed in the long-term if the boss does not have the complete respect of his players.

"I'm sure that if you went to Carrington you would immediately know who was in charge - Sir Alex," he said.

"I'm sure it would be the same at Arsenal and at Chelsea when Mourinho was there.

"It's the same here with the manager.

"At all those places, one thing would ring absolutely true - and that is that they were the boss.

"There are clubs when you can tell the manager is not the top guy and that's when things seep through and the cracks appear.

"Make no mistake about it - there is no one here ever in any doubt about who is the boss.

"He may sometimes act as if he's not sure of something, but he doesn't miss a thing. He is a fascinating and intelligent man."