Dean Smith says he’ll get drunk with Jack Grealish before worrying about Aston Villa future


Dean Smith will sit down with Aston Villa’s owners to discuss the future of Jack Grealish – after getting drunk with the club’s prize asset.

Skipper Grealish scored a superb 84th-minute goal only to deflect in an effort from substitute Andriy Yarmolenko a minute later. The point, however, kept Villa up.

Asked what happens now with sought-after Grealish, Smith said: “He goes out and gets drunk with me. That’s what happens now. Then tomorrow I go and speak to the owners.

“He is contracted for around three or four years. We have billionaire owners and if people want him he’s going to cost an awful lot of money.”

Villa boss Smith also dedicated the club’s incredible survival success to his father Ron who passed away during the lockdown after contracting Covid-19.

Smith said: “I’ve just spoken to the family. They’ve watched it in the living room and I’m immensely proud. It’s a huge achievement. It’s been an emotional period. I lost my father during the pandemic, I’m wearing my Holte Enders In The Sky badge and he will be looking down on us.”

Smith paid tribute to the character of his men whose triumph comes despite losing key men to injury throughout the campaign.

He went on: “I’ve learned a lot about myself and the players. Building a team in one of the hardest leagues in the world is tough. We’ve learned a lot.

“We wanted a Premier League keeper and got one in Tom Heaton who was taken away from us. Our record scorer Wesley – taken away from us. John McGinn taken away from us. So to come through what we have one. I’m immensely proud.”

While it’s delight for Villa, Watford and Bournemouth saw their relegation from the Premier League confirmed on the final day of the season.


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