Manchester City open Jack Grealish transfer talks with Aston Villa

The England playmaker and Tottenham’s Harry Kane are key targets for City

Jack Grealish in action for England during Euro 2020 at Wembley Stadium. File photograph: Visionhaus/Getty Images

Jack Grealish in action for England during Euro 2020 at Wembley Stadium. File photograph: Visionhaus/Getty Images

 

Manchester City have stepped up their pursuit of Jack Grealish by opening negotiations with Aston Villa. The England playmaker is a key target for City, along with Tottenham’s Harry Kane, and a decision on whether a deal can be struck is expected within days.

Villa are keen to hold on to Grealish and have offered the 25-year-old a new contract. They intend to stand firm and build their team around him but their resolve will be tested if Grealish tells his boyhood club he wants to leave and City come up with a satisfactory fee. The asking price would likely be at least £100m.

Grealish turns 26 in September and must decide whether he is patient enough to continue at Villa, who have improved each season under Dean Smith and this summer indicated their desire to push for a place in Europe by spending £30m on Emi Buendía and bidding for Arsenal’s Emile Smith Rowe. That offer was rejected and Smith Rowe has since signed a new contract.

Grealish knows City offer a route into the Champions League and a likely guarantee of trophies. City have won the Premier League in three of the past four seasons, secured the FA Cup in 2019 and their run of four successive Carabao Cup triumphs included a victory against a Villa team containing Grealish in the 2020 final.

City’s desire to improve the attacking potential of a formidable squad has prompted them to identify Grealish and Kane as their primary targets. Tottenham rejected a City bid for Kane, worth at least £100m, last month and maintain they have no plans to sell Grealish’s England colleague.

Kane has made clear his desire to leave and indicated he would welcome a transfer to City, describing the service provided by Kevin De Bruyne as “a striker’s dream”.

Pep Guardiola has spoken in the past of his admiration for Grealish, describing him in 2019 as “incredible” and “a top player . . . who always creates something”. At that point City’s manager said Grealish was too expensive for his club but they are exploring now whether a deal can be done. - Guardian

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.