Jack Grealish has emerged as a potential summer transfer target for Manchester City, who are reported to have followed rivals Manchester United with interest.
Whilst Aston Villa are continuing to struggle in the Premier League, sitting 19th as things stand, club captain Grealish is still gaining interest ahead of the summer transfer window.
The 24-year-old versatile midfielder has had a good season in the colours of Claret and Blue, contributing with seven goals and six assists.
The latter have been credited with a liking of Grealish for sometime now leading to dozens of reports over a potential summer bid, whilst the Citizens are now reportedly keen to make a move for the Birmingham born footballer.
Villa will undoubtedly miss the impact of Grealish if he departs the club this summer, whether that be in the Premier League or the Championship, depending on how this season pans out, but the young midfielder will look at the reported interest with a hope of furthering his career.
So, who would Grealish suit more if both City and United are interested? Well, Transfer Tavern’s Georgia Goulding believes that Pep Guardiola’s squad is already full of midfield options, whilst also claiming that the former England under-21 international could become a regular at Old Trafford.
“There’s simply no room for Grealish at Man City, who are already well-stacked in their midfield. United would be a smart move for him, particularly if Paul Pogba is to leave this summer. The 24-year-old will add some extra flair to the middle of the park for the Reds, who have struggled with midfield participation aside from Scott McTominay and Bruno Fernandes. With the numbers Grealish has tallied this season, it would be surprising if he didn’t become a regular starter under Solskjaer.”
Touching on Goulding’s comments and the interest from City, who will lose Leroy Sane this summer, Transfer Tavern’s Adam Clancy seemed to agree, issuing a warning to the goal scoring midfielder that he would become just a ‘squad player’ with Guardiola’s side.
“Whilst Jack Grealish is a talent and arguably too good for Aston Villa, I think Manchester City is a step too far. As he predominantly plays as a left-sided attacker, I do not think Pep Guardiola would play him over Raheem Sterling, Bernardo Silva or Riyad Mahrez. If Grealish has an ambition to cement his place in the England squad for Euro 2021, he arguably needs to be playing regularly. He has sometimes played a CAM too, but Kevin De Bruyne is arguably the best player in the world in this position, and whilst David Silva is leaving, Phil Foden will be looking to take over from him. He would only be a squad player at best at City, and for that reason I would say no.”
So, a tricky choice awaits Grealish if those reports of interest from Manchester are to come true but a final decision on where his future lies from here on out could also take into account his England international future.
England boss Gareth Southgate has been reluctant to select the Villa man thus far, but a move to either City or United could force his hand in the future, something Transfer Tavern’s Jonathan Radcliffe has discussed.
“Jack Grealish is certainly a talented player, and is one of the few reasons why Aston Villa aren’t already consigned to an immediate return to the Championship – his seven goals and six assists in the Premier League for the Villans leads the way in both departments – but I think it is far too soon to be talking about him becoming a regular England starter. Firstly, there is plenty of competition in his position with the likes of Mason Mount and James Maddison coming through, whilst Dele Alli has already cemented his place as an important player for Gareth Southgate. More importantly though, I find it hard to argue that any player playing for a relegation candidate can play for the Three Lions. England are now in a position where they can challenge for each and every international tournament – to do that, you need players who have performed at the highest level in pressure situations – Grealish has no such experience. If he completes a big transfer to say Manchester United or Liverpool and continues to perform, then we can talk. Right now, though, he shouldn’t even be in the conversation.”
It certainly will be an interesting summer for Grealish and it could very well define his future both at club level and on the international scene.
Whilst both City and United will be tempting to the midfielder, his focus will firmly be on helping Villa remain in England’s top flight, but as for any young player performing well at a smaller club, interest will simply not go away.
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