Fri 10 June 2022 | 18:18

Southgate: Grealish has "learned a lot" at Man City

Jack Grealish's first year at Manchester City wasn't very exciting, but England manager Gareth Southgate can see that he's getting better.

Gareth Southgate


Jack Grealish

"learned a lot" at

Manchester City

. Grealish became the most expensive player in British football history when he joined City from

Aston Villa

for £100m last year, although he only had 10 goal involvements in his first season (six goals, four assists).

He made 39 appearances (31 starts) for

Pep Guardiola

's team but created more open-play opportunities (76) than any other City player except Kevin De Bruyne (94). On Tuesday, the 26-year-old came off the bench to help England draw 1-1 with Germany in Munich.

Southgate said Grealish has improved since joining Manchester City, where he won the Premier League title. Southgate: "It's crucial that all of our players understand how we play. We give them a structure and prepare them for games, but we want their talents to shine. That's the game-changer.

"Jack's substitution [against Germany] was fantastic. I know he enjoys playing with us, but he also enjoys playing with his club. He's learned a lot from winning the Premier League, which is crucial to him.

"He's a great player. He has a terrific mentality and character, and I think he's a great group member. He enjoys football at his feet, which is evident in daily training. England will meet Italy in a replay of the Euro 2020 final on Saturday. Southgate said the fact the game will be played behind closed doors at Molineux is an "embarrassment"

"It's a national humiliation," he remarked. "I'm not sure if football fans created the problems. We spoke enough about it after the final and when the punishment was first given, but I will say that the vast majority of our fans who traveled to Germany on Tuesday behaved brilliantly. A big thank you to them because maybe people thought something different, but a huge majority were a credit."

Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse hopes to get a chance if


manager Gareth Southgate rotates his lineup as he looks for his first Nations League success.

"The manager mentioned seeing specific players in different games, so hopefully, if the time comes, I can demonstrate what I can do against a high level of opposition," the free-kick expert added. "Hopefully, I'll get some minutes.

"You can tell in training that everyone in the squad performs well for their club. The standard is so high that missing the European Championship squad was a major challenge.

"I see this as a new challenge, a new opportunity, and I believe it has given me more incentive moving into this World Cup announcement that I want to be there, be part of this amazing group, and maybe recreate our success."

source: SportMob

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