Sat. Sep 26th, 2020

Man Utd


Liverpool legend John Barnes tells Jack Grealish Man Utd transfer would be huge mistake

3 min read
Jack Grealish continues to be linked with a transfer to Manchester United from Aston Villa
Jack Grealish continues to be linked with a transfer to Manchester United from Aston Villa (Picture: Getty)

Liverpool legend John Barnes fears Jack Grealish would be making a huge mistake were he to swap Aston Villa for Manchester United this summer.

The Villa captain played the starring role in his side’s survival campaign last term, culminating in the 24-year-old scoring the goal which effectively kept his side in the top flight against West Ham on the final day of the season.

Grealish has been a long-term target of United’s with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer a keen admirer of the player’s attitude as much as his talent.

United’s No.1 target remains Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho, but Grealish represents a viable alternative, although the Premier League giants are reluctant to pay much more than £55million.




Barnes, however, believes the talented midfielder will be doing his long-term international prospects no good were he to move to Old Trafford and risk losing a guarantee of regular first team football ahead of next summer’s European Championships.

Gareth Southgate was heavily criticized for leaving Jack Grealish out of his England squad
Gareth Southgate was heavily criticized for leaving Jack Grealish out of his England squad (Picture: Getty)

‘I don’t think that going to Manchester United or a bigger team will help his England chances at all,’ Barnes told

‘Manchester United have just signed Donny van de Beek, and he’s not going to play ahead of him, Paul Pogba or Bruno Fernandes, and not playing regularly for Manchester United will not help his England career, but playing every week for Aston Villa where he is being seen and improving is more likely to help his England chances.

‘Playing for a bigger club should not mean you have a more likely chance of being in the England team. Being at a bigger club and playing regularly in the Champions League, playing well and scoring goals will help you, but Jack Grealish will not be the number one player at a team like Manchester United.’

Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate was heavily criticised following his original decision to leave Grealish out of his squad ahead of the upcoming matches against Iceland and Denmark.

A raft of injuries to key players, including the likes of Marcus Rashford, has handed Grealish something of an England lifeline, but Barnes believes Southgate’s original decision was justified.

He added: ‘Southgate obviously felt that there were other players who were ahead of him and he put them in and it was not a mistake to leave him out or call him up now.

‘Jack is 24 and a good player, maybe he feels why he has been missing a call up is because England have a lot of attacking options in those positions, that is not to say that he isn’t a good player, but he has to consider the balance of the team, the balance of the squad, and with the players dropping out he felt it was right to call Grealish up.

‘So it was not a mistake to begin with to not call him up because Gareth has to make the tough decision about who are his best players. I’m glad to see him being called up.’



MORE: Marcus Rashford speaks out as he’s replaced by Jack Grealish in England squad

MORE: Jack Grealish sends congratulatory message to Ben Chilwell for completing Chelsea move

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