Jack Grealish jumps ship
Manchester City broke the British transfer record to prise Birmingham boy Jack Grealish away from boyhood club Aston Villa in the summer, paying 100 million pounds for his services.
We are delighted to announce the signing of @JackGrealish on a six-year deal.
Welcome to City, Jack! 💙
— Manchester City (@ManCity) August 5, 2021
While Villa have reinvested that money into their squad, signing Danny Ings, Leon Bailey and Emi Buendia for a combined 100 million pounds, the trio have been unable to take the pitch together too often.
As a result, the midlands club have suffered badly. Of their 11 games this season, they have lost 7, including their last 5 in a row, which sees them currently sit in 16th place on ten points, two points clear of the relegation zone. For a club that have European aspirations this season, it is unacceptable.
Dean Smith sacked and Grealish sends message
With this in mind, news broke yesterday that Aston Villa had parted ways with Dean Smith after three years in charge.
Aston Villa Football Club can confirm that the Club have parted company with Head Coach Dean Smith.
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) November 7, 2021
The club have decided to use the upcoming international break to hunt for a new manager, with Steven Gerrard among several candidates, as per The Athletic.
While the current squad were allegedly “gutted” at the news, so too was former player Grealish, who worked with Smith for two of his three years in charge.
Despite now working under managerial legend Pep Guardiola, Grealish took to social media to describe Smith as the “greatest of all time” when it came to management. High praise indeed from the most expensive ever Brit.
It remains to be seen whether a new manager will be able to turn their fortunes around, but Smith will be remembered fondly at Villa Park nonetheless.
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Premier League table
|4||West Ham United||10||9||20|
|6||Brighton & Hove Albion||11||0||17|
|Salah, Mohamed||Liverpool FC||10|
|Vardy, Jamie||Leicester City||7|
|Antonio, Michail||West Ham United||6|
|Mane, Sadio||Liverpool FC||6|
|Fernandes, Bruno||Manchester United||4|
|James, Reece||Chelsea FC||4|
|Smith-Rowe, Emile||Arsenal FC||4|
|Gallagher, Conor||Crystal Palace||4|
|Ronaldo, Cristiano||Manchester United||4|
|Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick||Arsenal FC||4|
|Son, Heung Min||Tottenham Hotspur||4|
|Zaha, Wilfried||Crystal Palace||4|
|Firmino, Roberto||Liverpool FC||4|
|Jota, Diogo||Liverpool FC||4|
|Fornals, Pablo||West Ham United||4|
|Wilson, Callum||Newcastle United||4|
|Maupay, Neal||Brighton & Hove Albion||4|
|Cornet, Maxwel||Burnley FC||4|
|Hwang, Hee-chan||Wolverhampton Wanderers||4|
|Player||Team||Red Cards||Yellow Cards|
|Pogba, Paul||Manchester United||1||4|
|Dennis, Emmanuel||Watford FC||0||5|
|Skipp, Oliver||Tottenham Hotspur||0||5|
|McGinn, John||Aston Villa||0||4|
|Westwood, Ashley||Burnley FC||0||4|
|Moreno, Rodrigo||Leeds United||0||4|
|Ritchie, Matt||Newcastle United||0||4|
|Duffy, Shane||Brighton & Hove Albion||0||4|
|Tarkowski, James||Burnley FC||0||4|
|Laporte, Aymeric||Manchester City||1||3|
|Shaw, Luke||Manchester United||0||4|
|Veltman, Joel||Brighton & Hove Albion||0||4|
|Mings, Tyrone||Aston Villa||0||4|
|Lallana, Adam||Brighton & Hove Albion||0||4|
|Lascelles, Jamaal||Newcastle United||0||4|
|Brownhill, Josh||Burnley FC||0||4|
|Romero, Cristian||Tottenham Hotspur||0||4|
|Sambi Lokonga, Albert||Arsenal FC||0||4|
|Salah, Mohamed||Liverpool FC||7|
|Pogba, Paul||Manchester United||7|
|Jesus, Gabriel||Manchester City||5|
|Kovacic, Mateo||Chelsea FC||5|
|Doucoure, Abdoulaye||Everton FC||4|
|Bowen, Jarrod||West Ham United||4|
|Alexander-Arnold, Trent||Liverpool FC||4|
|Antonio, Michail||West Ham United||3|
|Fernandes, Bruno||Manchester United||3|
|James, Reece||Chelsea FC||3|
|Benrahma, Said||West Ham United||3|
|Dennis, Emmanuel||Watford FC||3|
|Saint-Maximin, Allan||Newcastle United||3|
|Lowton, Matthew||Burnley FC||3|
|Rice, Declan||West Ham United||3|
|Smith-Rowe, Emile||Arsenal FC||2|
|Gallagher, Conor||Crystal Palace||2|
|Townsend, Andros||Everton FC||2|
|King, Joshua||Watford FC||2|
|Ings, Danny||Aston Villa||2|