Manchester City: In the win over Chelsea, Jack Grealish put in a competent but unremarkable performance.

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Manchester City: In the win over Chelsea, Jack Grealish put in a competent but unremarkable performance.

Pep Guardiola billed Jack Grealish as a big player for the big occasion when he gave the £100 million man his first action of 2022 against Chelsea in a rematch of the Champions League final.

But the Premier League’s most expensive player is still struggling to live up to the hype, and his performance on Saturday was a microcosm of his first season at The Etihad – adequate but not exceptional.

Pep Guardiola’s side are 13 points clear at the top of the table, and he’s not the reason for it.

Grealish was suffocated for the most part by Chelsea’s man-mountain Antonio Rudiger, and he fluffed his big chance after 40 minutes when Kevin De Bruyne’s interception bounced kindly into his path inside the penalty area.

Grealish tried to sidefoot past Kepa Arrizabalaga, but the angle wasn’t right, and the Chelsea goalkeeper was able to divert the ball for a corner with his outstretched left leg.

Grealish now has three goals in 21 games for City, which isn’t good enough for someone who was the darling of England fans at the Euros last summer.

Indeed, his three goals came in City’s 18-3 victories over Norwich, Leipzig, and Leeds.

Grealish has had a few off-field issues throughout his career, including a brawl with Phil Foden at City, for which he received a reprimand from Pep Guardiola.

Grealish, Foden, and Bernardo Silva chatted before the teams lined up, Grealish putting an arm on Foden’s shoulder like an older brother would.

Guardiola used Foden as his false nine this time, with Grealish wide left in a 4-3-3, which is his preferred formation.

The imposing figure of Rudiger regularly coming across to assist Cesar Azpilicueta in thwarting danger was his problem.

Grealish’s work rate would have pleased Guardiola, especially when he chased down Kepa and forced him to kick the ball against Azpilicueta for a corner.

However, City paid a lot of money for magic on the ball, and it isn’t working out.

He didn’t always have the courage to go one-on-one with Rudiger and instead played a simple pass inside.

City’s strategy was for Joao Cancelo to hit the ball down the left channel, hoping for Grealish to get in behind the Chelsea defense, but as a sweeper-keeper, Kepa often neutralized the threat, and Grealish lacked the raw speed to reach the ball first.

When he pondered…

Nokia News – Quick Recap

Jack Grealish gave another underwhelming display in the win over ChelseaIt was the £100m man’s first game of 2022 and he missed a glaring chanceThe England midfielder has scored only three goals in 21 appearances for City He’s certainly not the reason Pep Guardiola’s men are 13 points clear at the top

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