New Aston Villa head coach Dean Smith has challenged Jack Grealish to become an even better player and significantly increase his goal and assist return in the coming months of the 2018/19 campaign as we try and kill two birds with one stone – improve the club slowly on the pitch and have a stab at promotion in the process.
Speaking to the media following his first win in the hot seat again Swansea City last Saturday Smith said he was confident that he knew how to turn Jack into the player we’d all like to see and part of that is him learning how to play better without the ball and do more of a team job.
Quotes from the Telegraph.
“Jack is an outstanding talent and he was probably rubbing his hands when he saw me coming, thinking this is a guy who wants his teams to play. And then all the work this week has been without the ball. He has probably seen a different side to me but that is part of his game he needs to do a little bit better. He has not got the goals and assists that somebody of his talent should.”
Smith went on to say he welcomes the players questioning him when it comes to what he wants, why do that etc, and he praised Jack’s desire to the learn and understand and he explained he saw signs of him taking things on board in the Swansea match given how he played, so he was obviously pleased on that front when it came to his attitude.
Swansea wasn’t vintage Jack or Jack at his best in my humble, but there was clear improvement in his game – whether you put that down to playing in his better position or not. Elmohamady got the assist but Jack gave him the ball and his one effort, in particular, was unlucky not to go in, so the signs are positive and plenty of fans noticed that as they commented on social media following the match.
— Jack Grealish (@JackGrealish1) October 20, 2018
Back to your best today Jack.
— Katie Jayne (@MissKatieJayne_) October 20, 2018
Not saying he isn’t trying but something not right at the mo. Confidence? Carrying an injury? Passes he used to make not coming off, less dribbles. Sure he will get there.
— Jon Walker (@JonWalker1983) October 21, 2018
He only came off as Swansea changed to a back 3 and we’ve now got a coach who reacts. No ones above being taken off but I can’t agree he never put a shift in.
— Smiffy (@SmithyAVPaul) October 20, 2018
Need to start scoring or creating chances not just gliding all over the park. Sure that will come with proper coaching now
— Mark Coley (@019Dudley) October 20, 2018
Love the way you play and beat players, great to watch, just wish you put the ball in the net more, especially when good chances come, sure you’ll improve, your still young.
— Jordan Roberts (@JordanR48463765) October 20, 2018
Give the lad a break, it's not going to do much for his confidence all these negative comments, I thought he did well today ????????????
— Michelle Lane (@michellelane56) October 21, 2018
Plenty of fair negative comments as well pointing out he needs to do better, but a number of fans certainly read into the substitution. Whatever the reasoning, it doesn’t make it a bad decision.