Jack Grealish has arguably become one of England’s most talked about players.
The Aston Villa captain became everyone’s favourite during the Three Lions’ run to the Euro 2020 final with crucial assists against the Czech Republic and Germany.
Last season, Grealish showed his importance to the Premier League side with six goals and 10 assists in 26 games as Dean Smith’s side comfortably achieved an 11th-placed finish.
The 25-year-old is a constant threat for Villa and was fouled more than any other player (110 times) during the 2020/21 campaign, despite missing 12 games through injury.
His performances over the past two years is attracting serious interest from Premier champions Man City.
Manager Pep Guardiola has a wealth of attacking talent at his disposal, including Raheem Sterling, Phil Foden, Riyad Mahrez, Bernardo Silva and Ferran Torres.
And despite winning three Premier League titles in the last four seasons, Guardiola appears to want to go all out to sign Grealish.
Last month, talkSPORT’s Jim White revealed a £100million transfer for Grealish was ‘as good as done’.
He said: “According to talkSPORT sources, Jack Grealish to Man City is as good as done.
“Villa haven’t confirmed it, there is no confirmation coming out of Man City, but talkSPORT sources tell me it’s as good as done.
“The fee will be £100m and Jack Grealish will join Manchester City.”
Grealish is currently enjoying a well deserved holiday following his Euro 2020 exploits as he weighs up his next move.
Villa have been showing intent during the summer as they broke their club-record fee to sign Emi Buendia for £33m.
They have had two bids, worth around the £30m mark, rejected by Arsenal for young forward Emile Smith Rowe and are also tracking Bayer Leverkusen winger Leon Bailey.
With Villa targeting attacking players in the window so far, it could suggest Grealish is on his way out.
But on the other hand, could bosses be bringing these players in to feature alongside their star man as they attempt to break into the top six?
The temptation comes from the prospect of working with Guardiola and playing alongside Kevin De Bruyne – and possibly Harry Kane – plus the very real possibility of winning multiple trophies.
However, the romantic football fan can see parallels to Matt Le Tissier, the ultimate one-club man who stayed loyal to Southampton and shunned bigger clubs desperate to sign him.
talkSPORT co-host said that’s a very real possibility and added he could achieve better than the Saints legend.
“If he wants to be a Matt Le Tissier and stay at a club because he’s comfortable there, he gets a great big bag of money from them, he’s a big fish in a slightly small pond, although Aston Villa are a brilliant football club.
“If they can keep pushing up the league, there’s an argument to say he can play in Europe with Villa.
“They’re going to be supported by the two guys who run the club, who clearly understand football and clearly understand Aston Villa.
“Aston Villa have a degree of control over the situation. What they have is a contract which protects their financial interests.
“Jack Grealish can leave Aston Villa, he just cannot leave without Aston Villa’s permission, economically.
“With the contract they have with Jack Grealish, which has four years left now, they are in control of the situation.
“But it doesn’t stop Jack Grealish from leaving. Man City, or whoever wants him, can put down £100 million, and he’ll probably be going.”
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And former Liverpool Danny Murphy thinks he’ll have to be proactive to get the move he wants.
“He can knock [on the chairman’s] door and say ‘I want to go and win trophies and play in the Champions League.
“He’s at the peak of his powers and it’s very hard to have a long term view as a player.
“You generally get advised to take what you can when you can because in a year you could [injure] your knee. You don’t know and all of a sudden Jack Grealish isn’t worth £100m.
“So Jack doesn’t have to sit tight if he wants to move.”
Grealish has already proved his loyalty to Villa by signing a new and improved five-year contract last summer, despite interest from Manchester United.
It is clear to see how much Grealish loves the club he has played for since he was six years old.
Jose Mourinho told talkSPORT the player already knows where he’s going next and fans will hope the boyhood supporter, who is a legend already in their eyes, is staying put.
There is real hope that with him in the side anything is possible in the years to come.