Grealish leaves for Man City (well, almost).

I think it’s pretty safe to say that this deal is going to happen anytime now.
All parts of the media are saying it should be done today and when that happens, you know they’re not far off the mark and can’t all be wrong.

So how do I feel about it?
First thing, it would seem it’s not the rumoured £100 million and is actually nearer £75 million with a lot of performance based add-ons that might take it to £100 million. That seriously disappoints me if it’s true, as it would suggest the club has just folded and conceded defeat far too soon. I said previously that the Manchester evening news had said that Man City didn’t expect to actually sign Jack for £100 million and it was just an opening bid.
I can only conclude from the fact that we’ve accepted the bid so quickly, two possible options. First is that there was indeed a transfer clause in Jack’s contract and we were pretty much powerless to try and stop him leaving or he’s dug his feet in and insisted that he will leave whatever. I massively prefer to believe it’s the first option.

I believe we’ve let him go too cheaply. I’ve said for a while that he was worth £130 million to us and I would like to think we’d have held out for at least some more from City, but I suspect the club’s hands were tied.

There have been rumours that our talks with the player involved offering him a new contract in the range of £150-200k a week. But that’s massively less than the rumoured £300k that City are going to pay him.
Be absolutely honest now and ask yourself if you would turn down the chance of a 50% pay rise. I suspect most of us wouldn’t, but we’re realistic and it would be more than fair to say that Premier league footballers are already in a position where one contract at far less money means they’re made for life. So it shouldn’t be about the money at all really, when you’re already earning £5 million a year. Are players really that greedy?
I suspect not, but when it’s very much in the advisor’s interests for a player to move, you can see how things work.

And as has rightly been pointed out, what happened to the “my city, my club” bollocks that Jack was coming out with just a few weeks back?
That’s the sort of thing that wrankles, just the same as when Fabian Delph (spit) left.
Us fans hate that sort of thing and Jack really should have known better.

Except I truly believe that at the time, he probably wasn’t planning on leaving.
I’ve no doubt whatsoever that Jack had his head turned while he was at the Euros. It’s a mixed blessing these days, being selected for England, as it means you get to talk at length to players at all the top clubs. Not that I think any of them are decidely better when it comes to the work environment and facilities. We just don’t have the glamour that you get in London and Manchester (I blame our useless city leaders for that latter part) and most importantly, we don’t have the one vital thing that anyone would like in their career and that’s success.

You can argue all you like that we’re on the cusp of something and you may well be right. But who has more chance of winning silverware this season, Aston Villa or Man City?
I don’t need to say, because it’s plainly obvious. Let’s face it, winning stuff is good, it’s as simple as that.
You can argue that if he’d waited, he’d have won with us and that’s a much better achievement. And it’s a fair point.
But it’s still a maybe, whereas with City, it’s odds on.

I get that he’s taken the easy option and sold his soul for a few (million) pieces of silver.
And from what I’ve been reading, many fans are massively upset or even angry that he’s going to leave. Which means he will start getting abuse which is going to hit home. And he must know it’s going to come.

Me, I’m pretty sanguine about it all.

There’s a big part of me that thinks that as much as he was brilliant to watch, so he also slowed play down too much a times. That was an ongoing criticism which he hasn’t had coached out of him and it’ll be interesting to see how Pep manages that side of his game. That said, I also believe he had to slow things down so players could catch up with the play. It could well be that better players at Man City mean he doesn’t have to slow it down so much.
And if that’s the case, he’s going to be even better for them than he was for us.

It’s going to be strange not having Jack in our side. But as has always been the case, no one player is bigger than the club.


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  1. badger123
    badger123 August 4, 2021 at 8:15 pm .

    I’d bet he’s on more money no than he was, but I get your drift.

    £20-25 million being talked about. That’s a fair bit less than I had in mind.

    Makes me laugh, Southampton fans saying it’s a sideways move. Er, yes, ok.

    1. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 August 4, 2021 at 8:22 pm .

      Sideways move?

      This isn’t the old Villa – haven’t others yet realised we have owners with a financial clout in the Qatari / Abramovitch league and an ambition to match?

      Is Tod Cantwell really the limit of their midfield ambition?

      Going to be an interesting few days; NSWE are not going to mess about or be messed about.

  2. Bill Pearson..
    Bill Pearson.. August 4, 2021 at 8:15 pm .

    Speachless, grandad Grealish would turn over in his grave if he knew that Jack had abandoned Aston Villa , I’m like Hitch cannot wish him the best because he had all the teaching at Villa from day one and walked away, Danny Ings was a shock and I’ll welcome him to our club and with the knowledge that it was a good bit of business on the club’s part. What would I like to see? Us getting into the European games and getting silverware before Man City did ,I’d deem that as a kick in the teeth to players that walked away.

  3. Bum Bum
    Bum Bum August 4, 2021 at 11:04 pm .

    Ings. Gosh. What a way to do business!

    If Jack goes for as little as £75m,that’s a shocker…

  4. Roy Bracy
    Roy Bracy August 5, 2021 at 12:00 am .

    What a brilliant signing of ings, always liked him but not against villa.
    Looking like villa spending the money before grealish goes maybe so teams can’t fleece them or showing Jack what he’s going miss playing with.
    I think villa will be better balanced as a team without jack as he did tend to try an hog the limelight,and it was noticeable against West ham he kept on trying to beat the 2 markers when he should have unstabled West ham by moving centre or right.
    I remember Smith criticed him about not moving away from them markers.

    1. Big Fat Ron
      Big Fat Ron August 5, 2021 at 1:52 pm .

      Roy, your point is excellent and highly pertinent. Jack admitted in an interview during the Euros that his worst trait is his stubbornness. He didn’t move away from the markers because he wanted to prove he could handle them. He thought moving away would be accepting defeat, whereas in fact it would have been giving his team the advantage in a game they lost and should have won comfortably. Pep won’t stand for that.

      I’m sad to see him go – sad for him too, as I think this would have been the season when he could have led Villa to major silverware, so I think he’s making a mistake, but my overriding feeling is that it will benefit the club’s progress ON the pitch. We’ve got Ollie, Danny, Bert, Anwar, Leon up top. AND Buendia, who I believe will take the Barkley role. AND we want to see Chukwuemenka come through. AND I think one more will arrive, possibly Cantwell, who has the ‘folk hero’ vibe about him. And I think JWP could still happen. Add to that one of the best defences in the league. F****** ‘e’ll, this could be one heck of a season! A season which the evidence suggests Jack would not have played a full part in.

      I wish him all the best and hope he gets a magnificent ovation when he returns to VP. He deserves it. Let’s not be short-sighted.

      Up the f****** Villa!

  5. Bill Evans
    Bill Evans August 5, 2021 at 1:19 am .

    I’d be surprised if money was a major factor, though agents, family and friends could be persuasive in those matters. I just don’t think Jack is motivated by money.

    My sense is that he’s simply an athlete at the top of his game, striving forever to improve. I think he sees coaching with Guardiola and with “the best players in the world” his only way of doing that. I know we all like to think that our team are the best and he could get there with the Villa, but then there’s the World cup to think about… with Citeh he might think he stands a much better chance of getting selected by Southers – I’m not sure he’d be right about that but there you go.

    My sense is that he’s going to “improve his game”. He’ll always be a Villa fan above anything else.

    1. Guest
      Guest August 5, 2021 at 1:24 pm .

      Absolutely spot on, the most sensible reaction I’ve read on here.

  6. Hitchens60
    Hitchens60 August 5, 2021 at 7:53 am .

    On Sky this morning – a précis

    Grealish has a £100m release clause in his contract.

    Villa we’re prepared to offer him more money than Citeh to stay.

    Grealish wants to win titles and Villa feel they are two to three years away from that. Interestingly, they also say NSWE feel that Grealish leaving might actually accelerate the programme.

    Management and players understand and wish him well; there is no ill feeling and they hope the fans will take the same approach. His legacy remains.

    1. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 August 5, 2021 at 7:54 am .

      I assume much of the negotiation is about how the £100m will be satisfied so there may be add ons around appearances etc.

      1. Big Fat Ron
        Big Fat Ron August 5, 2021 at 1:55 pm .

        Tens and twenties in a briefcase, please.

  7. Mark
    Mark August 5, 2021 at 9:44 am .

    Sad jack is going, but I understand why. Remember 10 teams finished above us last season without him, and he only played 2/3 of past / seasons maybe he has issues??

  8. ThirdGenerationVillian
    ThirdGenerationVillian August 5, 2021 at 1:24 pm .

    here’s a thought

    what if he fails the medical because of his shin splints!

    1. Big Fat Ron
      Big Fat Ron August 5, 2021 at 1:53 pm .

      Then we’ll all say we wish he’d gone!

  9. Big Fat Ron
    Big Fat Ron August 5, 2021 at 2:00 pm .

    Quick comment on Ings. A brilliant signing of a supreme goalscorer. If he stays fit, he’ll score a shitload with the supply he has. Buendia, McGinn and co supplying the bullets for Ollie and Danny. Wow. We were always going to sign a striker this season. A complete no brainer. I hope he gets the ‘9’!

  10. Big Fat Ron
    Big Fat Ron August 5, 2021 at 2:08 pm .

    Brilliant tweet from William Hill suggesting PL not ready for Villa’s mind blowing forward line.

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