England looking to poach Aston Villa starlet

England U-21 manager Gareth Southgate has revealed that plans are in place to persuade Aston Villa youngster Jack Grealish to commit his senior international career to England.

The 19-year-old has been earning rave reviews for his performances in the Villains’ first-team over the course of the past few months, with his displays having pushed speculation forward surrounding his playing future away from domestic football.

Grealish was born in Birmingham, but has represented the Republic or Ireland at U-17, U-18 and U-21 level, which has led to calls for him to be fast-tracked into The Green Army set-up, despite his young age.

WANT MORE? >> Aston Villa transfer news | Latest transfer news

The winger is set to represent Ireland at his current level again later this week against Norway, but Southgate says that hopes of making him a Three Lions player remain strong:

“Jack is somebody we have spoken to over the years, him and his family,” he is quoted by the Daily Mail.

“He has been in our younger development teams. The family and Jack are aware of our interest. Up to this point they have preferred to remain with Ireland.

“I haven’t spoken to him personally but certainly people from our organisation have kept in contract. We have been monitoring him but in the end it’s up to the player.

“He’s going to make his decision on where he wants to go. These things are quite fluid at younger ages, it happened with Michael Keane and his brother Will, and Jonathan Bond came from Wales.

“More and more, because of the nature of society, there are players in our system who are duel nationality and have that choice to make.

“Lots of other home nations are running development camps at a young age so players develop an allegiance quite young.

“You are allowed to switch once when you are a young player and Jack is someone we are monitoring and we’ll keep our eye on that situation.”

Fill out our survey and win a pair of PUMA EvoPOWER boots as worn by Mario Balotelli, Cesc Fabregas and Marco Reus!

Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey , the world’s leading questionnaire tool.