Gareth Southagate Insists Jack Grealish Must Play In The Premier League To Be Eligible For England Selection

Gareth Southgate has made it clear Jack Grealish will not be eligible for an England call up until he plays top flight football.

The Aston Villa midfielder is regarded as one of the gifted central midfielders but is yet to get the nod. Grealish moved his international allegiance to England from the Republic of Ireland but is yet to be selected in the senior setup.

He debuted in 2016 for the England U21 side and so far has been featured in seven games. A Villa academy product the 23 year old has been an ever present in the senior setup for the last couple of seasons but his antics in the middle of the pitch hasn’t been enough to attract the attention of the England management.

While the likes of Jadon Sancho and Callum Hudson-Odoi have made it to the big stage the midfielder might have to wait for a bit long it seems.

Southgate said, “Jack worked with us in the U21s briefly.

“Although we can see the quality, when the evidence of the opponent is a different level, that’s where it’s hard to directly correlate what that’s going to look like at a level above.

“With Callum [Hudson-Odoi], he’s playing Europa League, he’s playing Premier League – that does make a difference.

“I’m not going to say we won’t pick a player from the Championship because that could happen but it’s far more difficult to assess his level.

“You see certain parts of the game but not others [in the Championship]. Not the physicality at times, nor the tactical discipline. That’s another level in the Premier League – the speed, the pace”.

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