Jack Grealish admits critics are right to suggest he needs more goals and assists

‘I should be scoring more’: Jack Grealish admits his critics are RIGHT to demand more of the Man City star after he netted at Wolves as Rio Ferdinand insists it’s up to the winger to want to be more prolific

  • Jack Grealish says critics are right that he needs to score more goals 
  • Grealish ended his wait to find the net as he managed to score against Wolves 
  • Rio Ferdinand stressed it is up to Grealish to mentally want to be more prolific 

Jack Grealish thanked Pep Guardiola for retaining faith in him after the forward’s first-minute opener set Manchester City on their way to the Premier League summit.

Grealish has faced sustained criticism for a lack of goal contributions since a £100million switch from Aston Villa but scored within 55 seconds at Wolves on Saturday.

It was a first strike of an injury-hit start to his second season at the Etihad Stadium and the 27-year-old admitted relief after being left frustrated by his own performance against Borussia Dortmund in midweek.

Manchester City’s Jack Grealish has admitted he needs to provide more goal contributions

‘It was a long time coming,’ he said. ‘I haven’t scored since the West Ham game (in May) so it was nice to get off the mark for this season.

‘Guardiola has been brilliant with me. I have to thank him because he gave me the opportunity after my performance on Wednesday wasn’t the best at all but hopefully I repaid him.

‘I should be scoring more, I should be getting more assists. The only thing I can do is score and get assists.

‘I’m always going to get people talking about me. If you look at my whole career I probably haven’t scored as much as other people. It’s something I do want to add to my game.’

Guardiola fiercely defended Grealish after question marks over his role in the team after the Champions League win over Dortmund. But the manager does not want gratitude from the England international for persisting with him.

‘They (the players) don’t have to say thank you,’ he added. ‘I have confidence in all of them and they have to play for them. Of course I am happy for him, for the victory, for his incredible personality to play. That’s why I am happy for the goal he scored.

Grealish is pleased with the faith that manager Pep Guardiola has shown in him at City

Grealish is pleased with the faith that manager Pep Guardiola has shown in him at City

‘I said to them many times they are here because I trust them unconditionally, all of them. I trust them unconditionally and Jack is not an exception.

‘Every time he has the ball it’s one against one against the full-back all the time. OK, he didn’t (always) score or assist but it’s a question of time. We didn’t (always) help him with runners in the final third.’

Erling Haaland scored for the seventh consecutive game – and took his tally to 14 in nine matches – as City nudged ahead of Arsenal at the top of the league, while Phil Foden added a cheeky third.

Guardiola – who admitted the £100m price tag makes Grealish a target for criticism – reiterated that he measures him on his overall output rather than goals and assists.

‘I don’t ask him to just score a goal,’ he said. ‘I said to try and be aggressive. He has to be who he is, that is all. Everyone has good moments, bad moments.

‘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.’

Pundit Rio Ferdinand says that it is up to Grealish to mentally want to score more goals

Pundit Rio Ferdinand says that it is up to Grealish to mentally want to score more goals

Rio Ferdinand says it is important for Grealish to mentally want to score more goals. 

Ferdinand said: ‘All the conversation in the media was about stats and Grealish’s lack of goals and assists. He expects to score more goals. He’s very honest about his performance. A lot of wide players would ghost into here. He’s fighting already to get into that little space. That’s what he wants. He scores the goal.’

‘It’s up to him mentally before every game to want more goals. As soon as the ball gets into areas where players can deliver, get in areas where you can score. The game is very much data and stat driven, it’s going more and more that way and you don’t want to get left behind.’ 

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