Alan Hodge pleads with England not to waste Aston Villa star Grealish's talents

Jack Grealish

Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish could feature for England in the near future.

Former player Alan Hodge has likened Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish to heroes Peter Beardsley and Paul Gascoigne and hopes England don’t waste his talents, the Daily Star reports.

Grealish has made the headlines in recent weeks following his decision to choose England over the Republic of Ireland, despite representing the latter at U21 level.

It’s a decision which has been widely lauded by fans and pundits alike, with many now speculating that the Villa star could feature in next summer’s Euro 2016 Championship in France.

While that may be a little farfetched considering his young age and the competition for places, Hodge feels Grealish could make an impact and pleads with England not to disregard his talent.

“Jack reminds me of two players who arrived late into World Cup squads but went on to become household names - Peter Beardsley at Mexico '86 and Paul Gascoigne before he took Italia '90 by storm,” Hodge explained.

"Those two had the flair, imagination and lack of fear to go and express their ability. Jack can be the same. Let's not make the mistake of wasting his skills like we did with Glenn Hoddle.”

"Jack still has a tough six months ahead as Villa are unfortunately struggling but I do believe that Tim Sherwood will steady the ship and Jack can have a big influence."

One step at a time:

While the news of Grealish’s decision to represent England is extremely positive, the Villa star has some way to go before starring on the international scene and his club form must come first.

Villa have struggled to get the prized talent firing on all cylinders this season, and one of boss Tim Sherwood’s biggest hurdles is actually nailing down Grealish’s best role.

The 20-year-old has often featured in wide areas so far this season, yet many speculate that his ideal position is through the middle where he can ghost past players either side and unlock defences.

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