Jack Grealish admits adapting to Man City has been harder than expected | OneFootball
Jack Grealish admits adapting to Man City has been harder than expected
Manchester City star Jack Grealish has admitted adjusting to Pep Guardiola’s methods has been more difficult than he had anticipated.
Grealish joined City from Aston Villa in a British record £100m transfer this summer and has since contributed two goals and three assists in 15 appearances for his new club.
And speaking candidly in an interview with the Telegraph, the England international insists he has “so much more to give”.
“I’ve found it a lot more difficult than I thought I would, adapting to a different manager and team-mates,” he said.
“At first I thought I’d have more of the ball, get more assists and goals but it doesn’t work like that at all. I’ve had nowhere near as much of the ball as I used to get at Villa.
“I wouldn’t say I’ve struggled, but I found it hard to get used to at the start. I’ve not had the assists and goals I got last season, but I’m never one to doubt myself.”
The 26-year-old returns to Villa Park for the first time since leaving on Wednesday night, and he has also lifted the lid on the circumstances surrounding his departure from his boyhood club.
“I knew some people would be unhappy when I left, and I can see why some were like that, but I gave my all for the club every single year I was there,” he said.
“If I score, I’m not going to be celebrating. At the end of the day I’m Jack Grealish from Solihull who loves the Villa. That will never change – I’ve had a season ticket since I was four and been a fan my whole life.
“I was so close to coming to the West Ham game [in October], as we’d played on Saturday against Palace. I was invited to sit with Christian [Purslow, Villa’s chief executive] but I wasn’t actually sure of the reception I was going to get so I didn’t go.
“Fingers crossed it will be a good one on Wednesday. I’ll clap all four sides of the ground no matter what. If I get booed it will be a bit awkward!”
Grealish insists he has no regrets about joining City, and he is particularly enjoying playing in the Champions League and being coached by Guardiola.
“Some games this season he’s literally won on his own, from stuff he’s got us to do on the training pitch, with little tactics or tweaks. He’s an unbelievable manager and obsessed with football,” he says.
“You don’t see much of him in the building, but we see him on the pitches and in meetings. He has a lot of people working with him but 99 per cent of it comes from him.
“Every game we have a different way of setting up and it helps us so much.
“It’s weird because I’ve always classed myself as an off-the-cuff player. Last season I was playing left-wing and Dean Smith would say ‘if you feel like it’s right to go inside, I trust you and go and do it’.
“Here, it’s more structured and completely different. That is what I mean about adapting. There’s lots of meetings and a lot to get used to.”