Jack Grealish, the bad boy who makes England fall in love

Madrid

Updated:29/06/2021 00:44h

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Jump on the grass with the low socks It became a gesture of irreverence long ago. Soccer, so indecipherable and unpredictable at times, seems to find in this banal trait a solved riddle about talent. It was George Best, possibly one of the best footballers in history, who popularized this style in his time. He did it, he once said, to tempt his rivals to kick him more. In this European Championship, the English Jack Grealish He is the maximum exponent of this trend, and coincidence or not, he is precisely the player who has received the most fouls in the last three Premier. At the moment, it is unknown whether or not this data is related to how you usually wear the stockings.

To their 25 years, Grealish is one of the sensations of the tournament of nations, as well as a character full of peculiarities. In his childhood, he alternated soccer with galeic football, a discipline similar to the most common rugby in Ireland, where it has its roots and for which it played in the lower categories. Of English parents, Grealish, born in Birmingham, it feels english, so he celebrated the Southgate call last September. It was not, however, his first experience with England, since at the age of 15 he fainted in a concentration with the national team and was sent back home. Now, in a talented squad, the Aston Villa captain has managed to carve out a niche for Southgate. In his area, behind the undisputed Harry Kane, are Mount, Foden, Sterling, Rashford or Sancho, so it was not easy to get into the team. Still, good minutes in his debut against Scotland opened the door for him to start against the Czech Republic, when he assisted Sterling with the only goal of the game. Today, against Germany, it could be the game again.

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Beyond the socks, Grealish’s career has several points in common with Best’s; too many, you might say. In both, the alcohol has had an occasional role. In 2015, during a vacation in Tenerife, Grealish was recorded lying on the ground completely drunk, which damaged the image of who was then a national promise. More recently, another episode stained his path. During his confinement in March last year, he was arrested for driving drunk and crashing his car into two other vehicles. Hours before the accident, he had made a call on his social networks for the population to stay at home. Grealish pleaded guilty at trial, apologized for what had happened and was punished with a fine of £ 90,000 and nine months without a license.

Guardiola’s goal

Another very different thing is his history with Aston Villa, which even has a certain pedigree. Your great great grandfather Billy Garraty he wore the team’s jersey in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when they won the FA Cup in 1905. 110 years later, Grealish came close to emulating his ancestor, but Arsenal ended up winning the 2015 final. Already then, Grealish sounded to make the leap to a great of England, even more so when the descent of Aston Villa was consummated in 2016. But far from closing this setback in his departure, he ended up in a demonstration of loyalty to the team of his childhood, and the following he spent three years in Second. Since his return to the Premier in 2019, Grealish is one of the most valued players in the league.

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His exceptional performance with Aston Villa, where he is captain and leader on the field, was rewarded with the Southgate call. Not even an untimely injury in February, which had him in the infirmary for about three months, left him without a ticket to the Eurocup, where he has grown with the passage of games. Now, the unknown is in his future, as City wants to make him the highest transfer in the history of the Premier. Grealish has not commented on the matter, but has expressed in the past his admiration for Guardiola. If the operation is confirmed, it would be a luxurious reinforcement and, also, the end of a beautiful love story with the ‘villains’ that goes back more than a hundred years.

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