Manchester United are not trying to sign Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish and are prioritising a holding midfielder rather than an attacking one, according to The Athletic’s David Ornstein.
Grealish has been linked extensively with the Red Devils over recent months and there have even been reports this week that a deal was close.
In a live Q&A podcast this afternoon, Ornstein was asked whether he thought United would try to complete a deal for Grealish before football returns and what kind of asking price might be involved. The answer was unexpected.
‘Some contacts tell me United are not in for Grealish and are focusing more on a holding midfielder than his kind of position’ Ornstein replied.
‘In a normal market, I think Villa would have been looking for around £40/50m if they got relegated, up to £90m if they stayed up. But it’s not a normal market now.’
The highly respected journalist also commented on Grealish’s alleged drunk-driving incident during lockdown, where he was reported to have run his Range Rover into several parked cars before arguing with residents wearing a mismatched pair of slippers.
‘He will be keen for a big move whether it’s this summer or very soon. Not sure if his lockdown misdemeanour will go down well to potential suitors or Gareth Southgate’ Ornstein remarked.
The expert’s comments are in direct contract to a number of recent reports that suggested United had not been put off by the 24-year-old’s fracas.
It also suggests that the Red Devils might not have given up on keeping Paul Pogba, as Grealish is a left-sided attacking midfielder and would have been expected to partially fill the void left by the Frenchman.
Ornstein did not elaborate on which holding midfielders might be on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s shopping list, but there have been a number of recent reports linking the likes of Rennes’ 17-year-old prodigy Eduardo Camavinga, West Ham’s Declan Rice and Atletico Madrid’s Thomas Partey with a move to Old Trafford.
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