Noel Whelan has suggested Jack Grealish has not suited Manchester City’s style following his big-money move from Aston Villa in the summer.
Jack Grealish remains at the forefront of some important conversation among pundits and experts, as they remain baffled by his ineffective form with Manchester City. The former Aston Villa captain is yet to hit the same heights with the Premier League champions after making the move on a British record fee in the summer.
At Villa, Grealish enjoyed the role of the main man at the club, which enabled him to dictate attacking play. However, at Manchester City, he has had to adapt to a larger plan under Guardiola, where the objectives are well defined. The England international no longer has a free role on the field, which has probably hampered his progress.
Questions have been asked of Manchester City’s decision to spend £100 million on Grealish in the summer. However, most City fans continue to keep faith in his ability to improve his performances once his adaptation to Guardiola’s methods is complete.
In the last few games, Grealish has shown some improvement in adapting to the system at Etihad. He also performed well during the win over Fulham in the FA Cup. However, fans would like to see more such displays and an improvement of his stats, which currently read three goals and three assists for the season.
Noel Whelan has suggested Grealish has not suited Manchester City’s style so far. He told Football Insider how his role in the current team is very different from his Aston Villa days, suggesting he would need to adapt better to Guardiola’s style.
Whelan said, “Jack’s done okay, but he’s hardly set the world alight. At Villa, he was the main man, the best player, and everything went through him. His teammates always looked to get him on the ball and do something special.
“Villa were reliant on him and often struggled to create chances and break teams down when he didn’t play. At City, they are a complete team, and Guardiola has a very specific playing style. It’s not about getting one player on the ball and dribbling and running at players like it was at Villa. They need to move the ball around quickly and not take too many touches.
“It’s less spontaneous and, for a player like Grealish, who is all about instinct, he has had to adapt to that. It may sound brutal but he looks a completely different footballer as he has to be to get in the City team.”
The England international is yet to establish himself as a regular starter at the Etihad. Given the wealth of options at Guardiola’s disposal, Grealish will need to up his game soon or risk being left behind.