Jack Grealish

His international career might have started slowly and belatedly, but Jack Grealish is making up for lost time with his performances for England.

Hence, Football Castle takes a forensic look at his impact. 

The Aston Villa man has long been the scapegoat for international omission under the guise of being a Championship player. However, since getting the Villans up he impressed in the Premier League last season but was surprisingly overlooked. 

There were no excuses then, after scoring the goal that kept Villa up last season and starting the new one in imperious form. He was handed a belated debut in September but remained behind Mason Mount in the pecking order.

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His omission became the hot topic from the England camp during the October International break as he was an unused substitute in competitive games against Belgium and Denmark.

However, Mount’s recent sparkling performances in the number eight role for Chelsea opened up the likelihood of the pair featuring together.


Jack Grealish
Jack Grealish enjoyed a sparkling performance against the World’s best National Team, Belgium. (BELGA/AFP via Getty Images)

Hence, with Marcus Rashford and Raheem Sterling out with injury, Grealish looked the part in an eye-catching performance in defeat against the world’s top-ranked side, Belgium, on his first competitive start for England

The 2-0 defeat means they will not make it to the UEFA Nations League finals but the performance of Grealish was the game’s talking point.

Deployed in the inside-left position, the 25-year-old was superb on the ball as he provided an inspired, creative outlet all night. England were indeed unlucky to not find the net against Belgium’s well-drilled defensive shape but a measure of his growing importance was his teammates’ keenness to give Grealish the ball as he drew fouls from the Belgians.

Pertinently, playing alongside Mount marshals the pressing when they lose the ball as the 21-year-old is an industrious asset off the ball. 

Grealish on the other hand produces the sublime. An outrageous piece of skill when he flicked an oncoming pass over Thomas Meunier particularly raised eyebrows.

Jack the superstar

Despite first-half goals from Youri Tielemans and Dries Mertens sealing the win for Belgium, the night belonged to Grealish, somewhat. His driving runs into tight spaces, linkup play and vision were a revelation for a nation which has hitherto struggled in tight games.

Suffice to say, the Aston Villa captain is England’s new Paul Gascoigne in terms of ingenuity, craftiness and skill.

“We created far more opportunities than we did at Wembley. I saw what I knew I would see from Jack, someone with the bravery to play. He took the ball in tight areas, his technique was good, we knew he would buy a lot of free-kicks. I thought he was outstanding, he should be delighted.” Gareth Southgate said after the match

“Today was a great game for us to see him in. I couldn’t speak highly enough of his performance.” 

Four goals and five assists in only seven games tell the tale of a man in the form of his life. His influence on a rejuvenated Villa side makes him one of the best players in the Premier League so far

Jack Grealish is NOT growing into the England team, he is growing into England’s superstar


Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin

Chief Editor of the Football Castle, Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin is a football junkie and writer of the beautiful game.


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