Manchester City are reportedly the favourites to sign Aston Villa star Jack Grealish this summer, the Daily Mail has reported.
What a season it’s been for the Villa man.
Grealish has been at the forefront of a successful Villans side which currently occupies ninth place in the Premier League.
His performances haven’t gone unnoticed, as league-leaders City have emerged as the likely candidates to sign the 25-year-old this summer.
This isn’t the first time that a Manchester club have tried to prise Grealish away from Villa Park, as United attempted to lure the midfielder to Old Trafford last summer.
Instead, Grealish signed a five-year deal with the Villans, seeing the Englishman take home £130,000 a week.
This season, Grealish has proven he’s one of the leading names in the Premier League, with 16 goal contributions across 22 appearances.
His performances in a Villa shirt earned him a WhoScored rating of 7.73 – only Harry Kane has provided a higher average rating throughout the Premier League this season.
Now, Villa face a difficult decision this summer. Should they cash in for the England international for presumably huge money or try to keep their star man?
GIVEMESPORT writers Tom Kelly, Sam Brookes, Josh Cole and Jonathan Gorrie provide their verdicts below…
“The love story between Grealish and his beloved Aston Villa is truly heart-warming. But like all great stories, it must come to an end.
“Put simply, Grealish has outgrown Villa, and selling their star asset may prove to be a wise move. In the next few years, the midfielder will surely want to move up a level to challenge for silverware.
“He is already 25 years old and this summer may be the best opportunity for Villa to generate as much cash as possible. The transfer fee could potentially be nine figures considering their prior valuation and the fact Grealish is on a long contract.
“With this money, Dean Smith’s side can look to the future and make a number of valuable additions to maintain the momentum Villa have continually built since he took to the dugout.”
“When you consider just how important Grealish has been to Aston Villa’s rise to prominence in recent years, it would be a huge mistake to let him leave this summer.
“During his absence in recent weeks, Villa have only been able to pick up one victory in the top-flight as they have lacked attacking creativity – as seen by the fact that they have only scored three times during this period.
“If Villa are to continue to improve as a club, it is imperative that they keep Grealish and build a team around him during the upcoming transfer window.”
“The last three matches have shown how Villa are over-reliant on Grealish right now. In his absence, they have scored just once, and that was an own goal.
“Yet this is not sustainable. They cannot keep turning to Grealish to bail them out of trouble. Instead, they must build a squad of players who can help take the side forwards.
“That means they need to cash in on their talismanic captain. They may suffer in the short-term, as replacing Grealish will be far from easy, but looking ahead this is the way they need to go if they are to cement themselves in the Premier League for years to come.”
“No, the summer really isn’t time to cash in on Grealish.
“While Aston Villa might have tailed off since their blistering start to the season, it’s important not to forget their progress this year.
“When the dust has settled, this will go down as one of their best campaigns in recent memory and, boasting a young team who seem to be recruiting well, selling Grealish now could curtail their progress.
“Since winning promotion to the Premier League in 2019, Villa have proven to be ambitious and aggressive in the transfer market. Constantly building and able to offer an exciting project, why ruin it by selling the crown jewel?
“The beating heart of the team and under contract for years to come, selling Grealish would be a mistake.”