Former Villa boss Martin O’Neill thinks star has enough ability to play for United

Manchester United have been linked with a move for Aston Villa playmaker Jack Grealish, whose future could depend on whether his club remain in the Premier League.

Former Villa manager Martin O’Neil believes Grealish possesses the natural ability to play for Manchester United, or any big club for the matter.

The links have certainly died down a bit due to the coronavirus crisis, so it remains to be seen whether United or any side will be as active in the transfer market as stated in previous reports. We discussed this with Phil Brown (@Malachians) on the latest Strettycast, available to listen here and on other podcast platforms.

While O’Neill sounds wary of passing judgement on whether Grealish would thrive at a big club and adding fuel to the transfer speculation, the former Republic of Ireland manager thinks the 24-year-old has enough ability to play for one of the big clubs.

Speaking to Stats Perform News, as quoted by GOAL, O’Neill said: “On Grealish’s future, that’s difficult to say. He’s a big fans’ favourite and Villa is his football club as well.

“Are you saying, ‘Does he have the ability to play for Manchester United?’ Certainly, the natural talent to play for any of the big clubs — there’s no question about that.

“I just don’t know enough and I’m in no position to make that judgement.”

Despite huge investment in the squad, Dean Smith has not got the results this season and they’re sat 19th in a relegation battle, although they do have a game-in-hand on their nearest rivals.

He added more on Grealish from what he can remember when he tried to get the midfielder to represent Ireland at senior level, saying: “I met Jack Grealish a number of years ago when we wanted him to play for the Republic of Ireland and he chose to play with England, no problem with that whatsoever — his father is English and he had played underage football for the Republic of Ireland, he made that decision and that’s absolutely fine.

“He’s very strong; he’s much stronger than he was five years ago, a quality player, hard to rob.

“You would hope that, at the end, Villa would have enough to pull themselves around and see it through. Of course, if you’re depending on one player, which they have been over the past couple of months, that can cause problems.”

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