Aston Villa have appointed Remi Garde as their new manager on a three-and-a-half-year deal. The Frenchman, 49, succeeds Tim Sherwood and will watch Villa’s match at Tottenham on Monday from the stands. Garde, who left Lyon in 2014 after three seasons, described joining the Premier League’s bottom club as an “unbelievable honour”. “Obviously we have a difficult task in front of us but I’m looking forward to the challenge,” he added. Villa have slipped to six straight defeats in the league and, with just one win since the opening day of the season, the club sacked Sherwood after eight months in the job. Chairman Randy Lerner said: “Nobody at Villa can deny that we are way behind. We recruited aggressively this past summer and it is our responsibility to now harvest this talent rather than buckle under pressure and criticism – we are better than that. “Remi arrived with honesty, humour and a steely sense of what it will take for Aston Villa to be what it is meant to be – hard working, tireless, creative and unwilling to concede.” Garde was Arsene Wenger’s first signing as Arsenal manager in 1996 and he stayed at Arsenal until he retired in 1999.