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Why Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish is attracting Tottenham
Spurs had £25m bid rejected by Villa
Last Updated: 08/08/18 4:56pm
Aston Villa are adamant they will not sell Jack Grealish this summer after Tottenham bid £25m for the midfielder - but why is the midfielder in such high demand?
Spurs are the only top-flight club not to have made a single signing in the current window and looked set to swoop for the England U21 star until Villa issued a hands-off warning.
Here, we reveal why Grealish is so sought-after by taking a closer look at his stats...
A pre-season kidney injury last summer meant Grealish did not return to Villa's starting line-up until December - but he soon made up for lost time, providing an instant impact and helping his boyhood side surge into the play-offs.
If Spurs got their man, Grealish would offer considerable firepower and threat on the break from midfield, alongside Dele Alli and Cristian Eriksen.
As a result of his lay-off, the midfielder only managed three league goals - but two of those were from outside the box, including a stunning, match-winning volley against Cardiff in April.
Per 90 minutes, his goal-scoring ratio and chance creation during 1,858 minutes on the pitch exceed an average Premier League midfielder that played 500 minutes or more last term - attributes that would help Spurs unlock opposition defences.
The 22-year-old attempted 50 shots during the 2017/18 Championship campaign, hitting 13 on target - those figures are nearly twice those achieved by the average top-flight midfielder.
In addition to attempting 70 per cent more fast breaks, the Englishman was fouled 37 times in the opposition's final third - nearly seven times more than a top-flight player in his position.
Those fouls were drawn from recording a superior number of dribbles, touches and final-third passes, while his tendency to win 50/50 duels in this area and fire crosses would also suit Spurs' style - and feed talisman Harry Kane.
In terms of weaknesses, Grealish falls behind the average Premier League midfielder in a range of physical categories. He is inferior at blocks, clearances, interceptions, aerials and tackles - areas Moussa Dembele and Victor Wanyama cover at Spurs.
However, Aston Villa insist their in-demand star will not be sold during this transfer window as the club prepares to mount another promotion challenge after a troublesome summer.
The stats suggest Grealish has genuine class - but can Villa stave off interest from Premier League powerhouses and keep their man?
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