England coach keeps tabs on Grealish during Villa’s midweek victory

Aston Villa ace Jack Grealish was under the watchful eye of England coach Steve Holland in the midweek victory over Rotherham, The Birmingham Mail reports.

What’s the word?

Widely regarded to be one of the hottest prospects in English football and being heavily linked with a transfer to the Premier League in the summer, Jack Grealish has found his name on a lot of lips in recent months.

The 23-year-old will play a huge part in Aston Villa’s promotion push this season and could also earn an opportunity in Gareth Southgate’s England squad, as The Birmingham Mail says Three Lions coach Steve Holland was in attendance for the midweek victory over Rotherham.

Southgate previously hinted that he would keep an eye on players in the Championship this season in his search for talent and Grealish, along with Derby County’s Mason Mount, where a point of focus in the latest round of matches – and will continue to be monitored ahead of England’s friendly against the United States in November.

What’s been said?

“I can’t rule out players in the Championship now as our pool is getting smaller and smaller.

“One of our biggest concerns is playing time for English players, shown by a number of the squad that came with us to Russia not getting opportunities to play. More concerning is that young players that may be coming through to challenge are not getting opportunities to play.

“The missing piece is this transition from youth football to senior football,”

Is he ready?

With seven appearances for England’s U21 side, for whom he has scored two goals, and regular action for Aston Villa, Grealish is at the stage where he should certainly be considered by Southgate – but the process cannot be rushed.

Handing him a debut in a friendly against the United States may feel like the ideal opportunity to bleed the 23-year-old into the senior set-up but the reality is that Grealish has not been great so far this season, with no goals and just one assist to his name.

Grealish’s focus must be on his club form if he is to become a regular for England further down the line, otherwise, he runs the risk of becoming the latest name in a long line of players who have made their international debuts for the Three Lions before vanishing from the fold completely.

His time is close but November may be too soon for Grealish, who must remain patient for his opportunity.