Southgate's concerns about Grealish amid repeated calls to start him for England


Jack Grealish is yet to start for England at Euro 2020 despite there being a huge clamour for the Aston Villa man to be more heavily involved.

The playmaker came off the bench against Scotland but was unable to influence proceedings at Wembley.

Grealish has been the leading light at Villa Park ever since his hometown club returned to the top flight and there were calls for Southgate to pick him long before he eventually did.

The Aston Villa star was handed his debut just before he turned 25, which nowadays is relatively late.

He has been pictured having discussions with Southgate in the stands over recent months as he recovered from injury.



Gareth Southgate is facing huge calls to start Jack Grealish
Gareth Southgate is facing huge calls to start Jack Grealish

According to the Athletic the pair have a good relationship with one source saying: “Any talk that Gareth has an issue with Jack, or doesn’t like him as a person, couldn’t be further from the truth.”

That though does not mean that Southgate does not have several concerns regarding Grealish.

For starters he and the Aston Villa man do not agree on his best position which, of course, makes things difficult.

Grealish is most effective coming in off the left for his club, but Southgate is often keen to employ pace in wide areas.

That means when the 25-year-old does get given opportunities he is perhaps not as influential as he might be with Aston Villa.

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The playmaker appeared from the bench against Scotland
The playmaker appeared from the bench against Scotland

The England boss supposedly also lacks trust in Grealish to perform as he may want. There’s no denying that he is something of a maverick, but that has only served him well during his playing career.

Southgate though is clearly one who likes structure which, again, counts against Grealish.

Now more than ever the England pathway is crucial with promotion up through the youth ranks part of the national model.

Since Southgate was appointed he has shown continued faith in youth with the U21s a breeding ground for talent.

That is thought to be another hurdle that Grealish is having to overcome.

He and former U21s boss Aidy Boothroyd failed to see eye-to-eye and were barely on speaking terms by the end of one tournament.

Boothroyd was a close ally of Southgate’s and his thoughts will no doubt have been relaid.

Grealish’s party image will also not have endeared himself to any manager, let alone Southgate.

He has since controlled such antics which ultimately saw him in the headlines for the wrong reasons.





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