Jack Grealish: Cross compares midfielder to Paul Gascoigne
Two friends just having a chat? Or signs of one of the biggest transfers of 2021? It doesn’t take a lot for fans to get excited during transfer windows and when Manchester United fans saw behind the scenes footage of captain Harry Maguire deep in conversation with his Aston Villa counterpart Jack Grealish prior to the game on New Year’s Day, tongues started wagging.
Grealish has been a Manchester United transfer target for several years now and his performances since Villa’s promotion back into the Premier League have just increased the clamour among Red Devils fans to see him arrive at Old Trafford.
The 25-year-old is captain of his boyhood club and has followed up his ten goals and eight assists in 41 games in all competitions last season with even more impressive performances in the current campaign.
Grealish has six goals and nine assists in 16 appearances in the Premier League and EFL Cup so far this season, and has picked up his first five England caps since the summer.
His performances have led to even more speculation that he is ready for a move to one of European football’s biggest clubs and when he was spotted speaking to Three Lions team-match Maguire on Manchester United’s official YouTube channel, fans were quick to get excited.
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“Captain Harry and Grealish chatting it up before the match,” one fan wrote on Reddit, before another replied with “Grealish so wants United move”.
Aston Villa are said to value Grealish at around £100 million, meaning United are among the few clubs in world football who could realistically afford the midfielder.
A potential deal for Grealish could be financed – partly at least – with the sale of Paul Pogba, who has made no secret of his desire to move away from Old Trafford in the near future.
“I would trade Pogba for Grealish in a heartbeat,” one fan said, before another queried: “As much as I want him here, are we really going to drop £80m-£90m on him? Unless we sell someone to make up the cash I can’t see it happening.
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“I guess the absolute dream approach is Pogba plays a blinder for the rest of the season, we win the league and we let him have his move if he still wants it and then buy Grealish to replace with the money?”
Other United fans were also quick to question where Grealish would fit into the side, considering Marcus Rashford often plays in a similar position to his England team-mate for United.
One said: “Where would he even play? He’d have to bench either Rashford or [Bruno] Fernandes and I can’t see that happening, unless Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] plays Rashford on the right out of position.”
With another adding: “Where would Grealish fit in our team? He seemed to be everywhere in the Aston Villa game. Is it possible he could play RW or LW with Rashford on RW?”
A view echoed in another reply, which said: “He occupied the wings a lot (mostly left) against us and fared really well I’d say. Rashy can play RW, LW or ST. And Grealish could play LW, CAM or RW. Overall [United have] great coverage and depth.”
Gareth Southgate has made real strides in trying to bring the players from different club sides together for the national team and ensuring the friction which used to exist no longer hampers England’s chances at major competitions.
And another United fan added: “Honestly, this will help England in international tournaments. [Steven] Gerrard, [Frank] Lampard, Rio [Ferdinand] have all mentioned how there were separate camps in the England team because of club rivalries, which affected the team spirit.”
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