Manchester City’s 2019/20 season hasn’t gone to plan for Pep Guardiola so far.
And with that in mind, Metro understand that Man City are already looking ahead to next season and considering how they can bolster the squad in the summer.
One of the names reportedly on the list, as the same source cites, is Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish, who’s been a shining beacon of hope at Villa Park this season.
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The 24-year-old caught Guardiola’s eye during City’s 3-0 thrashing of their side in October as he managed to impress despite a heavy defeat.
And looking at Grealish’s abilities, he may well be a player worthy of stepping into one of the biggest clubs in world football.
With David Silva set to leave the club when his contract expires at the end of the season, Grealish could offer a different type of playmaking prowess in Guardiola’s free-flowing system.
The stats included in the graphic were taken prior to Man City and Villa’s clashes with Crystal Palace and Brighton respectively.
When we delve into the numbers, it seems the Englishman, who earns just £35k-per-week on his current deal, per Spotrac, could add a new dimension to Guardiola’s imperious City side.
The 24-year-old has averaged 2.7 key passes and 2.2 dribbles in his first 20 appearances in the Premier League, edging out Silva in both categories as the veteran can boast with 1.8 and 1.1 per game respectively.
The only category in which Silva is actually more successful is security on the ball as he has been dispossessed just 0.8 times per game this season. Grealish, meanwhile, loses the ball more often with his figures standing at 1.7 per game.
What we can infer from the stats is that the Villa star could offer a greater level of dynamism and direct play from midfield. Silva has become renowned for his ability to connect the dots and see passes others don’t.
Grealish’s ball-carrying ability proves he would not be a direct successor for the former Valencia magician but rather an alternative option to light up the Etihad with his direct approach.
Whether they will eventually make a genuine approach for his services, however, remains to be seen.