Prince William sent Aston Villa a message of support ahead of a much-needed Premier League win over Southampton on Friday, manager Steven Gerrard revealed.
A goal from Jacob Ramsey late in the first half decided the game at Villa Park, as Gerrard’s side earned their second victory of the season to climb three points clear of the relegation zone.
Gerrard revealed afterwards that the Prince of Wales, a lifelong Villa fan, had been in touch during the week.
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"He messaged in the week, to the club, and that shows everything about what he thinks of this club," Gerrard said.
"It certainly took me aback. He is very much involved in Villa. For him to message in the situation he is in is really impressive.
"For us to reward that with a result and clean sheet, I'm sure he will be proud. It was along the lines of 'would love to be there'.
"He is consistently in touch. He is very supportive of the boys individually. It's really impressive, his knowledge and how much he is into it."
All football in England and Scotland was called off last weekend following the death of the Queen, who passed away aged 96 after 70 years on the throne.
A minute’s silence was held at Villa Park before kick-off and the national anthem was played.
Seven Premier League games are going ahead this weekend, but Brighton’s clash with Crystal Palace, Manchester United’s meeting with Leeds and Liverpool’s trip to Chelsea were postponed.
Villa's scrappy victory over Saints came after a difficult start to the season had left Gerrard open to criticism.
"It wasn't pretty or stylish but, with where we were in the league, we knew we had to do it in a pragmatic way," said Gerrard.
"I'm really proud of the boys' effort, application and commitment. We played better than we did last time. In football, you have to grind and fight and be committed and we worked hard today.
"We will get better in terms of style and possession and that will come but tonight was about the points."
The victory followed a commendable draw against Manchester City for the Birmingham club that ended a three-match losing run in the league.
Villa, who now have seven points from seven games, travel to Leeds next after the international break.
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