Jack Grealish: I run around more for England than at Aston Villa

Jack Grealish insists he runs MORE for England than he does for Aston Villa in the Premier League after Gareth Southgate criticised his forwards’ pressing in win over Romania

  • Jack Grealish is set to play a vital role for England at Euro 2020 this summer 
  • The midfielder claims he runs more with England than he does at Aston Villa 
  • Gareth Southgate told Grealish to go out and score more goals for Villa last term
  • Grealish insists he is not nervous for Euro 2020 despite England’s expectations 

Jack Grealish insists his work rate is up to the standards England require after revealing he runs more in international games than in the Premier League.

Gareth Southgate was unhappy with some of the things he saw from England’s attacking players during the 1-0 win over Romania on Sunday, spelling out to them at half-time that they needed to be doing more off the ball.

It led to questions about whether Grealish — the outstanding performer at the Riverside Stadium — can do what is needed when England are out of possession. But the 25-year-old is adamant he can put in the hard yards, with the numbers backing up his argument.

Jack Grealish insists he runs more during England games than he does with Aston Villa

The midfielder is set to play an important role in Gareth Southgate’s side at Euro 2020 

‘I can get better at it,’ said Grealish. ‘I spoke to the staff here and I seem to run more in games than I do at Aston Villa.

‘When I first came into the camp I sat down with the manager for about an hour or so and asked what I could improve on to get into his side. I went away and worked on that. I still think it is one side of my game I can improve upon.’

Southgate told Grealish at the beginning of the season he wanted to see more from him in terms of goals and assists at Villa, to enhance his claims of getting into the squad. The pair have remained in constant discussion about how he can continue to improve. 

Southgate told Grealish (left) to go out and get more goals for Aston Villa during last season

‘He didn’t actually say to me, “You need to go and run and get back and stuff”,’ explained Grealish. ‘But deep down I knew that was something I could work on.

‘I’ve tried to do that as much as I can this season. I think I need to do it more and be more disciplined when I play more centrally.’

This might be Grealish’s first major tournament but there are no signs of nerves. In fact, the only time he got butterflies was when he had to sit his driving test.

Grealish insists he is not nervous ahead of England’s European Championships bid this month

‘I had to be in at Villa after it because we were leading up to the FA Cup final and I still wasn’t driving,’ said Grealish.

‘I think it was the Thursday and the final was the Saturday and they wanted me in. So I had my driving test and as soon as I pulled out of the test centre I stalled.

‘I knew I’d failed straightaway, so I just said to the guy after two minutes, “Have I failed, mate?” and he was like, “Nah, carry on”. But I knew that I’d failed, so I just got out of the car and went to training!’

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