Aston Villa’s hopes of retaining the services of Jack Grealish for their promotion push this season have been handed a huge boost on Deadline Day.
The England U21 international had been widely linked with a transfer to Tottenham Hotspur, with Mauricio Pochettino‘s side lodging a bid worth £25m for the player according to Sky Sports – which Villa rejected.
While there was rising fear that Tottenham could return with an improved offer before this afternoon’s 5pm deadline, The Express & Star provided an update stating that Grealish would not push for a move – and Spurs now seem to be looking elsewhere.
According to Norwegian outlet Daglabet, Spurs are now eyeing a move for KRC Genk’s 20-year-old Norway international Sander Berge – which suggests that Pochettino has got the message from Villa regarding their stance on Grealish.
Tottenham are yet to make a signing this summer, the only Premier League side yet to do so, and are under pressure to perform next season in their move to the rebuilt White Hart Lane but were unable to tempt Grealish into a sale.
With the 22-year-old well established as key player in recent seasons at Villa Park, making 30 appearances last season and scoring three goals as well as contributing six assists, Steve Bruce will be relieved by reports that Spurs have given up their pursuit.
“The offer we had has not been enough to be tempted. We hope he’s still our player by Friday. But the last thing we want to do is pull the wool over anyone’s eyes. We all know the situation.”
However, it is unlikely to be the end of the saga in the long term as Grealish wants to play in the Premier League and could push for a move next summer if Aston Villa fail in their attempts to return to the top-flight.
That is a problem for the future though and Villa still have a strong negotiating position as Villa are preparing a new contract offer to the local hero, according to The Mirror, in another piece of positive news for the club.