John Terry has drawn comparisons between Jack Grealish and ex-Chelsea player Eden Hazard, while hoping that the Aston Villa player stays put amid reported interest from Manchester United.
Grealish has been one of the most consistent player’s in the Premier League this campaign, despite playing in a team caught up in a serious relegation battle.
The 24-year-old has scored nine goals in 31 games for Dean Smith’s team in all competitions, while also providing on eight assists.
Terry sees similarities between Grealish and Eden Hazard, who earned legendary status among fans at Chelsea during a seven-year stint at Stamford Bridge before joining Real Madrid back in June.
The Villa assistant also believes the midfielder has the same “god-given talent” as ex-Blues player Joe Cole, highlighting his speed and technical ability in possession.
“I think he’s similar to Joe Cole and Eden Hazard,” Terry said of Grealish during a Q&A session on the club’s official website. “I just think the natural ability he’s got and that Joe Cole had, a god-given talent that not many people are blessed with but he’s certainly got.
“The way he glides past people. He’s quick, but not many people know it – I don’t think he knows how quick he is. He’s a tremendous talent, he gets a lot of fouls in the Championship and now in the Premier League.
“People don’t know how to stop him.”
Terry is certain that the playmaker has what it takes to reach the very highest level of football, but would like to see him continue his development at Aston Villa amid interest from United.
“You see a lot of players from the outside, but when you go to a club and you’re working with players on a daily basis, you just see how much of a huge talent he really is,” the former Chelsea and England defender added.
“I got to see that in glimpses. He got an injury to his rib in pre-season against Watford, and he missed a big chunk of that season – having Jack fully fit in my season there, I’m pretty sure we’d have gone up.
“Jack’s a phenomenal talent. It’s been a real pleasure to see him grow, work and develop over the last year, two years. He’s shown the whole world this season that he’s more than capable of playing at the top level.
“There’s a side to Jack people don’t see. Jack’s there till 5, 6, 7 in the evening, he’s eating the right food and doing all his gym work.
“That’s all behind closed doors. He’s a top professional, wanting to get to the very top. I just hope he keeps improving with us and making us stronger because, with him, we’ve got a real chance.”