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Jack Grealish has been quizzed on the speculation that linked him with a move to Manchester United in 2020, with the Aston Villa playmaker name-dropping Bruno Fernandes in a light-hearted response.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was, however, to add a Portuguese midfielder to his ranks rather than launch a raid on a Premier League rival – with plenty of value found in that deal with Sporting.
Grealish has been speaking to YouTuber Harry Pinero, who is a United supporter, and was asked about the intense rumours regarding admiring glances from Manchester.
He said: “You’ve got Bruno anyway!”
The Red Devils landed themselves quite the bargain when snapping up Fernandes for €55 million (£47m/$60m) in January 2020.
He has become a talismanic presence for Solskjaer’s side, with the 26-year-old looked to for moments of inspiration.
Fernandes has delivered plenty, with 34 goals and 21 assists recorded through 62 appearances.
Grealish enjoys a similar standing at Villa, as club captain and a key part of Dean Smith’s plans.
He has impressed since returning to a Premier League stage, with seven goals and 10 assists registered this season – having hit 10 and eight in those departments during the 2019-20 campaign.
Like Fernandes, the 25-year-old’s game is all about unlocking opposition defences.
He has proved adept at that, with his value now being recognised by club and country.
Grealish has earned comparisons to England legend Paul Gascoigne and sits comfortably on any list of the finest ball-players in the Premier League.
He is, however, eager to avoid becoming caught up in his own hype and offered a humble response when told that he may have “the filthiest first touch” in the English top-flight.
Grealish said: “That’s not true.
“I do some alright touches but you need to put a bit of respect on Bruno and KDB Kevin De Bruyne.”
Grealish is currently in the process of trying to help Villa chase down European qualification and will be hoping to shake off a niggling injury in time to take in a derby date with Wolves on Saturday.