Aston Villa season in review: Jack Grealish

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - APRIL 23: Jack Grealish (R) of Aston Villa celebrates after his side's 1-0 victory in the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Birmingham City at Villa Park on April 23, 2017 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - APRIL 23: Jack Grealish (R) of Aston Villa celebrates after his side's 1-0 victory in the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Birmingham City at Villa Park on April 23, 2017 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images) /
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Aston Villa wonder-kid Jack Grealish started just 20 of the club’s 46 league matches. Despite being second on the team in scoring, Grealish left a lot to be desired in 2016/2017.

CAM/LW – Jack Grealish, 21

Appearances: 20 + (11)

WhoScored Aggregate: 6.68

Goals/Assists: 5/2

This was supposed to be the year Jack Grealish took the second division by storm. Alas, it didn’t quite turn out that way through inconsistency and another suspension.

Grealish appeared in 33 matches, but that took a hit back in the middle of October when he received a straight sending-off against Wolverhampton. The subsequent punishment for stomping Wolves’ Conor Coady was a three-match suspension.

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That decision killed much of the mojo Grealish had been building-up in recent weeks. Afterwards, the England youth international found it harder and harder to find the starting lineup.

It wasn’t all bad, though. Grealish, when featured, produced at a decent clip across a broad spectrum of measurements. His timely goals secured Aston Villa a number of points, most notably the equalizer on the last day against Brighton (you’re welcome, Newcastle). On the season, Grealish completed 81.3% of his passes. Moreover, his penchant for inducing fouls was as great as ever. Jack incredibly induced 2.6 fouls per match; many of which occurred in the attacking third, leading to dangerous set pieces.

He found a true calling as a weapon from the bench, one who could feature in several positions.

Video of Jack Grealish’s equalizer below:

Where Steve Bruce utilizes the 21-year old remains to be seen. Grealish operates best as the spearhead in a 4-4-2 diamond – a system in which based on personnel, could suit Aston Villa. However, in Bruce’s preferred 4-3-3, Grealish has to settle for either left wing or underneath central midfielder. A position he can comfortably handle either way.

2017-2018 Prediction: Rumors of Jack Grealish’s future elsewhere are most likely not true. Villa will only sell him at an exorbitant price (and rightfully so).

I think next year is truly Jack Grealish’s year to shine. At a growing age of 22, he might take the Championship by storm. Mark me down for 35+ league starts, 10+ goals, and 10+ assists.