Kevin De Bruyne defends Jack Grealish saying losing at Aston Villa ‘wasn’t the end of the world’ and explains why his Manchester City teammate gets more scrutiny ‘because he’s English’

    Kevin De Bruyne has defended teammate Jack Grealish, explaining the difference in pressure between playing for Manchester City and Aston Villa.

    Grealish, the Premier League’s most expensive player at £100million, has struggled to produce the goals and assists that were his trademark at boyhood club Villa since joining last summer.

    Grealish hasn’t yet hit the heights that made him the Prem’s most expensive player

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    Grealish hasn’t yet hit the heights that made him the Prem’s most expensive player

    But he opened his account for the season against Wolves and De Bruyne was pleased

    Getty

    But he opened his account for the season against Wolves and De Bruyne was pleased

    Ahead of the weekend’s 3-0 win over Wolves, Grealish hadn’t registered a goal contribution all season with his six goals and four assists last term his worst production since 2017.

    Manager Pep Guardiola was forced to defend his record signing in the build up to the match, and was later rewarded when the England international opened the scoring after just 55 seconds.

    Speaking post-match, De Bruyne said: “With all due respect he was at Villa before and if you lose a game sometimes it is not the end of the world.

    “But if we lose a game it is different. We have to perform every week and win games. That is different and what he has had to adjust to. As long as we win the games and he is doing a good job for us, that is all that matters.”

    He added: “If you start in the way we did it is an incentive to say: ‘OK I got a goal and am maybe a little more free in my mind to do what I need to do’.

    “Sometimes as a football player there are periods you find the net easily and then there are other periods where it is a little bit harder.

    Grealish showed plenty of relief after scoring

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    Grealish showed plenty of relief after scoring

    “I think for him playing forward and to start this way makes it a little bit easier. Critics are there when you are a good player.

    “If you set certain standards for yourself, everyone is going to measure you to these standards.

    “He has been struggling with some pain and some injuries this year but he has been playing good to me.

    “He started pre-season well and he was sharp but the second game at Bournemouth he did his ankle a bit. Be patient, I am not too worried. He is fine.”

    De Bruyne is sure his teammate will make it work

    AFP

    De Bruyne is sure his teammate will make it work

    De Bruyne also commented on the pressures Grealish faces as an England international, with his off-field behaviour often taking him from the back pages to the front.

    “It is not about football. Outside of football, the focus is more on them [England players],” he explained.

    “I understand because they are English and people tend to look more at what is happening.

    “I feel like foreign players, for instance if you have a night out, we don’t really get checked that often. Whereas I feel if an English player goes out, it is always in the media somewhere.

    “I think people are taking this on board also. What he does in his private life he does, nobody should care, but people do.”

    Source

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