X

Manchester United Reportedly Eye Aston Villa's Jack Grealish as Long-Term Option

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistMay 28, 2018

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 26: Jack Grealish of Aston Villa during the Sky Bet Championship Play Off Final between Aston Villa and Fulham at Wembley Stadium on May 26, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images)
Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Manchester United are reportedly keeping an eye on Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish and believe he could make a strong long-term option for the club.

According to The Sun's Neil Ashton, United are hoping to sign Fred from Shakhtar Donetsk this summer but also admire Grealish as a player who could become a fixture in their side for years to come.

In particular, they are said to enjoy Grealish's "driving runs through midfield from deep-lying positions."

The 22-year-old helped Villa reach the play-off final this season, but he could be set to move on after the club failed to secure promotion against Fulham on Saturday.

An issue with his kidneys saw him miss the early part of the campaign, but the attacking midfielder still contributed three goals and five assists in 27 Championship matches.

Bleacher Report's Sam Tighe has been impressed with the youngster's development:

Sam Tighe @stighefootball

If you hadn’t noticed already, Jack Grealish is fulfilling that 🔥 potential. Taking the Adam Lallana route https://t.co/rDyH5NfkmU

WhoScored.com's Martin Laurence praised him after the play-off final and hinted his future is now in question:

Martin Laurence @martinlaurence7

#AVFC fans absolutely sensational. Players gave everything second half and nearly had an 'I was there' moment from Grealish which would have been one of the best goals Wembley has seen in many years. Best player on the pitch. Best player in the Championship. What does he do now?

Despite his age, Grealish is capable of getting on the ball and dominating games from midfield, driving the team forward with technique and intensity, and creating chances for his team-mates.

That he is often targeted by opposition defenders with robust challenges is a testament to the threat he poses. His defensive work rate has also improved over the last year, which has no doubt further endeared him to United.

Broadcaster Ian Cheeseman believes Grealish possesses what might generously be described as uncompromising tenacity:

Ian Cheeseman @IanCheeseman

Grealish is a talent but a selfish, and at times nasty player - certainly not the type of player I’d want in my team - come on Fulham

Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho typically welcomes such traits in his squad members. Grealish likely wouldn't get as much game time there next season as he would at Villa Park or at a lesser Premier League club, though.

🚨 SPORTS NEWS ➡️ YOUR INBOX

The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.