Pep Guardiola admits price tag adds extra pressure for Jack Grealish after Man City win over Wolves

Jack Grealish scored the opener for Manchester City on Saturday. Credit: Getty.Jack Grealish scored the opener for Manchester City on Saturday. Credit: Getty.
Jack Grealish scored the opener for Manchester City on Saturday. Credit: Getty.
The Manchester City manager said he wants the attacker to ‘do incredible things’.

Pep Guardiola has admitted Jack Grealish’s £100m price tag does bring additional pressure onto the Manchester City attacker.

The 27-year-old’s recent performances have been under the spotlight, with Guardiola forced to defend Grealish’s displays on Friday.

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But the England international responded in the perfect way on Saturday as he netted the opener in City’s 3-0 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux.

It was a much better showing from Grealish, who was positive from the left wing and his creativity caused Wolves to be reduced to 10 men in the second half as Nathan Collins was shown a straight red card for a high tackle on the City No.10.

But asked post-match about the pressure on Grealish, the City manager said there is a greater expectation given the £100m spent to secure his services last summer.

Grealish scored after just 55 seconds at Molineux. Credit: Getty.Grealish scored after just 55 seconds at Molineux. Credit: Getty.
Grealish scored after just 55 seconds at Molineux. Credit: Getty.

“Yeah, maybe. We have to admit it,” the ex-Barcelona manager opined. “But it’s like today, you are 11 v 10 and it was not easy. Wolves were better than us and you pay a lot for a transfer, they have to do incredible things.

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“He has to be who he is, that is all. Good moments, bad moments everyone has. The important thing is: ‘I am Jack Grealish, I play like I am. I go there with a good mentality and try to do the best for myself to help all of us’. That is all I want for him and everyone.”

Haaland impact can rub off

Grealish’s goal was just his fourth in the league for City since last summer’s move, with Erling Haaland and Phil Foden also on target for the champions.

Haaland netted his 14th strike in just 10 games and Guardiola said post-match he hopes the Norwegian’s hunger for goals can rub off on Grealish and his City team-mates.

Guardiola hopes Haaland can have a goalscoring impact on his City team-mates. Credit: Getty.Guardiola hopes Haaland can have a goalscoring impact on his City team-mates. Credit: Getty.
Guardiola hopes Haaland can have a goalscoring impact on his City team-mates. Credit: Getty.

“Yeah. I said before, I don’t ask him [Grealish] to just score a goal,” he explained. “I said to try and be aggressive. You have an incredible two strikers like you have, the tendency is to take a lot to them.

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“But we needed the goals of Kevin [De Bruyne] last season, he had a lot of goals. This season he is thinking more of the assists and we need Gundo [Ilkay Gundogan] as well. When he plays there he is an incredible runner to the box - Aston Villa was the perfect example to show that.

“We need players. Always when we arrive there, players have permission to open the door and go into the box. Nobody is not allowed to do it there.

“Erling continues to score goals, that’s top. Julian [Alvarez] had a chance, that’s top. But the other ones need to have the desire, the hunger and the mentality to score goals as well.”

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