In a surprise omission, Jack Grealish once again finds himself left out of Gareth Southgate’s latest 24-man England squad.
Whilst Villa’s captain spent most of the season battling relegation, he played an important role as Dean Smith’s side ultimately avoided the drop.
This latest snub comes after Southgate’s remarks in March 2019 that in order to be capped for England, that Grealish must first play in the Premier League.
This apparently doesn’t apply to newly promoted Kalvin Phillips, with the Leeds midfielder earning a first call-up, despite not having yet appeared in the top-flight.
One might ordinarily consider whether the England boss has one eye on Grealish’s lockdown breach, with off-field disciplinary issues known to be a pet hate of Southgate. However, the selection of Harry Maguire, currently embroiled in a Greek holiday scandal, suggests that’s wide of the mark too.
Whilst Grealish struggled for post-lockdown form, there can be little denying his worth to Villa. It’s a surprise that a midfielder ranked 1st in the Premier League for Shot Creating Actions  and Chances Created  doesn’t fit the bill for the national side. The 24 year old was also ranked 4th in terms of assists during the last campaign and scored 8 times.
Whilst this will no doubt be a major blow for Grealish, Villa will now focus upon retaining a marquee player ahead of the new season commencing in mid-September. Grealish, meanwhile, remains heavily linked with Manchester United, Manchester City and outsiders Arsenal.
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