Jack Grealish has jumped to the defence of Mason Mount and find the regular comparisons between him and the Chelsea midfielder ‘annoying’.
The Aston Villa playmaker has been in good form this campaign and appears to have won over England manager Gareth Southgate, who afforded the 25-year-old with a rare start against Ireland in Thursday’s friendly.
And Grealish rewarded Southgate’s faith with a remarkable display, while Mount also featured prominently in their engine room.
Southgate had previously suggested the two players might be incompatible but, on the evidence of last night’s win at least, the two midfielders are capable of playing together.
Mount has already cemented his place as a first team regular with Chelsea, despite a couple of summer arrivals and Grealish says the criticism he has received is unjustified.
‘I love Mason,’ he said. ‘It’s a bit annoying actually because he probably gets a bit of stick about it at times but I’ve always been close with him.
‘I think he’s an absolutely terrific player. I don’t even feel like we’re fighting for the same spot to be honest. ‘If anything I think Mason’s underrated and he deserves all the credit he gets and I think that people who know about football will understand just how good he is.’
And after a superb performance against Sheffield United last week, both Graeme Souness and Ashley Cole argued that the 21-year-old midfielder desrves to be regarded as one of the first names on the club’s team sheet.
Speaking ahead of last night’s game at Wembley, Ian Wright said: ‘You know what? I think it’s disgraceful the way people have talked about Mason Mount getting his berth in front of whoever.
‘Mount is in there on credit and what he’s able to do. It’s unfair the amount of stick he gets for being chosen by Gareth.’