He’s always saying things about me! – Jack Grealish laughs at Graeme Souness’ jibes

Jack Grealish says Pep Guardiola wants him to have ‘balls’ as the Manchester City attacking midfielder laughed at Graeme Souness’ recent criticism of him and his style.

It’s been just over a year since the hometown Aston Villa star made a striking £100million move to the Etihad Stadium.

Grealish says the increased pressure and scrutiny is “an essential part” of representing City and England and that mentality perhaps explains why he has been able to handle Souness’s latest taunts with ease.

I don’t know what his problem is with me. He’s always saying things about me! But I try not to read a lot of it

Jack Grealish on Graeme Souness

The former Scotland star said this week that the 27-year-old is “not a great player” and should have improved since joining City, where he thought he thought faster and moved the ball faster.

“I don’t know what his problem is with me,” Grealish said, laughing. “He’s always saying things about me! But I try not to read a lot of it.

“It’s difficult to know when he’s on talkSPORT or Sky Sports and sometimes it’s all over the training ground.

“Listen, he’s obviously been a great player and won a lot, but I know he’s busy… I don’t know what it’s about, what he’s saying about me or what his problem is. I know my own abilities.

Jack Grealish says Pep Guardiola told him to keep the ball as best he could (Richard Sellers/PA)

(PA Archive)

“I know he used to say a lot about me not moving the ball faster, but when I play for a manager like Pep Guardiola and he tells me to keep the ball as best as I can and have balls I can take it anywhere, i will try and do that.

“Of course I will always have people if I don’t play well (criticize). Look, I know it inside myself, I’m always looking back at my games and things like that, and I’m very self-critical.

“I know that there were games, especially in the second half of last season, in which I wasn’t at my best at all.

“Unfortunately I came back preseason, I came back fit where I had a strong preseason and then got injured in the second game.

“But from now on I’m just going to try to put my head down and try to get that fitness back because I know I’m not at 100 percent yet. I think I only played 90 minutes this season.

“But yeah, I think I’ll always have people behind me, but I just have to try and walk and perform.”

Grealish seems to take it all at his own expense, admitting the review “probably affects my family more than me” after learning how to deal with it over the years.

“It’s more if someone like my mum or dad said it, I would listen a lot more,” he said ahead of Friday’s English Nations League clash in Italy.

“But, yeah, sometimes when people say it – whether it’s trolls on Twitter or Instagram or stuff like that – it doesn’t bother me at all.

“I think that’s just an integral part of what we play for the national team and play for big clubs in England.

Jack Grealish (right) admits the only way he wouldn’t get a stick at Manchester City was if he started the same way as Erling Haaland (Martin Rickett/PA).

(PA wire)

“I don’t think I’m the only one, I think there are quite a few. I think we just have to learn to deal with it.

“Obviously I’ve learned to deal with it over time.

“When I signed for Man City and the price and stuff that came with it, I knew it wasn’t going to be just for laughs unless I started out like Erling Haaland. I think that’s the only way I wouldn’t get spanked!

“Obviously I’m not going to sit here and say ‘nothing ever affects me,’ because sometimes it does. I’m a 27-year-old kid, so I had to learn to deal with that.”

Grealish was in the limelight long before he became a star due to some off-field behavior early in his career.

The attacking midfielder’s professionalism was questioned again in the summer following his celebrations at City’s title parade and subsequent holiday.

Grealish thinks criticism is unfair but knows he still has work to do to do his best for City and England.

“I’m like a normal kid, you know?” he said. “I feel like I’m just doing what a lot of other footballers are doing, but sometimes I think I get more attention when I’m on holiday in Ibiza or Vegas or something.

“After that, I uploaded photos of myself at work. I don’t know if many people have talked about it.

“I was trying to come back as fit as I could and I felt that way. I’ve seen the manager say that about me a few times.

“I know who I am and how professional I actually am and I hope that when I’m at my best I can get my performances back to where I was.

“I know how good I actually am when I’m at my best, so I’m hoping to get that back and get fit again as soon as possible.”

https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/jack-grealish-manchester-city-graeme-souness-england-pep-guardiola-b2172554.html He’s always saying things about me! – Jack Grealish laughs at Graeme Souness’ jibes

Fry Electronics Team

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