25-year-old attacking midfielder and captain of Aston Villa, Jack Grealish has signed a whopping £100 million release clause from Aston Villa to Manchester City in a six-year deal.
The move has dwarfed Paul Pogba’s £93.2 million United transfer back in 2016. Currently, Grealish’s handover marks the biggest in British football history.
With the news, Man City also announced that the Birmingham-born baller will don the number 10 shirt, which was recently relinquished by former City striker Sergio Aguero.
Speaking about the move, Grealish said: “I am incredibly happy to have joined Manchester City. City are the best team in the country with a manager considered to be the best in the world—it’s a dream come true to be part of this club. Over the past ten seasons, they have won major trophies consistently. Pep (Guardiola) coming here has taken them to the next level, and the football this team plays is the most exciting in Europe.”
Not everyone was pleased, though. Aston Villa fans noted that Grealish still has four years remaining in his contract. Addressing the dismay, Grealish doubled down on his move, claiming it was a difficult decision to make and that he’s been an Aston Villa fan his whole life, but he had to do it.
Grealish continued: “When I spoke to the manager here, and you see what type of players they’ve got here, in the end, it was something I couldn’t say no to. I am absolutely delighted to be here.”
Grealish made his Villa introduction in an ironic 4-0 defeat by City in May 2014. He made 17 Premier League appearances during the 2014-15 season following his debut, gradually improving and fine-tuning his footwork and technique.
In the 2019-20 season, Grealish made 36 League appearances and scored eight goals before being interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. More recently, he wowed representing England in the Euro 2020 championship, playing in five matches.
Chief executive of Aston Villa, Christian Purslow, revealed a £100m release clause in the five-year deal he signed last year. “Jack wanted to be certain if at any point a Champions League club came in for him and Aston Villa were not in the competition, we would not stand in his way,” Purslow said. “For that reason, we agreed to incorporate a so-called release clause. We set the value at a level we hope would not be met but reflected his true value to Villa.”
With this transfer crowning Jack Grealish, the ninth most expensive footballer in history, all eyes are on him for his Man City debut.