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Jack Grealish opens up about his return to Villa Park for Premier League shock as a Man City player and was in tears when he left childhood club Aston Villa


Jack Grealish has opened up to his departure from Aston Villa as he prepares to return to Villa Park.

Grealish left his childhood club this summer to join Man City in a successful £ 100million transfer.

Grealish is set to return to Aston Villa for the first time
Getty

The 25-year-old had mixed feelings about leaving the club he loves so much and admitted he was reluctant to return.

Villa invited Grealish to watch one of their games, but he wasn’t sure what kind of reception he would get.

Now he returns with his new club on Wednesday for their Premier League clash.

Grealish told The Telegraph: “I knew some people would be upset when I left, and I can see why some were like that, but I gave my all for the club every year I was there. If I score, I’m not going to party.

“At the end of the day, I’m Jack Grealish from Solihull who loves the Villa. That will never change – I’ve had a membership since I was four years old and have been a fan my entire life.

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Jack Grealish opens up about his return to Villa Park for Premier League shock as a Man City player and was in tears when he left childhood club Aston Villa
Grealish received a blow while on international duty but looks set to come back against Villa
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“I was so close to coming to the West Ham game [in October], as we played on Saturday against Palace. I was invited to sit with Christian [Purslow, Villa’s chief executive] but I wasn’t really sure what kind of reception I was going to get so I didn’t go.

“We’re crossing our fingers, it’s going to be a good Wednesday. I will hit all four sides of the ground no matter what. If I get booed, it will be a little embarrassing!

He admitted he was struggling to say goodbye to Aston Villa and said he owed them everything.

Grealish added: “You can’t imagine how hard it was for me to leave,” he says. “I went for a run in the morning, a lot of people took pictures of me and it was all on social media [media] that I was staying.

Jack Grealish opens up about his return to Villa Park for Premier League shock as a Man City player and was in tears when he left childhood club Aston Villa
Grealish has one goal and two assists in the Premier League this season
Getty

“I came back and had to address all the players and the staff. There were about 70 people. I spoke for about a minute and a half and then had to stop because my throat was tight and I was crying.

“I was a little surprised by some of the backlash when I left. I would never want a toxic relationship with someone there. I owe them everything and I wouldn’t be in City without Villa.

Grealish suffered a blow during the international break and was left out of the City squad.

Manager Pep Guardiola said: “Yesterday was Jack’s first minutes with the team. Phil (Foden) too.

“The two will do a test to see if they can make it to Birmingham.”

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