Ole Gunnar Solskjaer dismissed the idea of signing Bournemouth's Nathan Ake after a video appearing to show the Manchester United manager suggesting he wanted to do a deal for the centre-back went viral.

United crushed Bournemouth 5-2 in the Premier League on Saturday, with Ake featuring for the visitors at Old Trafford.

At full-time, Solskjaer greeted Ake and briefly exchanged words, and a clip of that moment was shared on social media with subtitles suggesting the Norwegian told the Netherlands international he was hoping to buy a left-footed centre-back.

Unsurprisingly it led to considerable debate and interest on social channels, though Solskjaer has distanced himself from his alleged comments.

Speaking to reporters ahead of Thursday's Premier League trip to Aston Villa, Solskjaer said: "I've got seven centre-backs.

"I don't know where that's come from. We're fine."

Another player who has been strongly linked with a switch to Old Trafford this season is Jack Grealish, who will be hoping to impress at Villa Park on Thursday.

The attacking midfielder caught the eye and scored a spectacular goal when the two teams played out a 2-2 draw in December, though Solskjaer would not be lured into a trap by lavishing him with praise, adamant United cannot afford to just concentrate on the playmaker.

"I think in the last game they caused us some problems, both Grealish off left and [Anwar] El Ghazi on right," he said.  

"He [Grealish] scored a fantastic goal. There's been loads said about him and we need to be aware of him, if he's off the left, middle or right.

"He attracts players to him but there's not just one player in that Villa team, there are a lot of them."

United go to Villa Park 16 matches unbeaten across all competitions and, following Leicester City's 1-1 draw with Arsenal on Tuesday, know victory will leave them just a point off fourth.

Solskjaer still feels United need to win their remaining five matches to secure a top-four finish, however, with their final game a potentially vital showdown with Leicester at the King Power Stadium.

"I think so, yes, you never know what's going to happen but it looks like teams around are playing well," he added.

"There are so many games, if you win every single one, we're in the top four. We cannot rely on help from anyone else, have to do it ourselves and go into next season we can put other challenges into teams."

Manchester City could be ready to challenge rivals Manchester United for Aston Villa star Jack Grealish.

Grealish, 24, has been linked with a move away from Villa, with Old Trafford seemingly his most likely destination.

But City may be primed to join the race for the attacker.

 

TOP STORY – MAN CITY CONSIDER MOVE FOR MAN UTD TARGET GREALISH

Manchester City will consider a move for Grealish if they receive their asking price for Leroy Sane from Bayern Munich, according to The Telegraph.

Sane is set to leave the Premier League giants this close season amid continued links to Bayern.

And City could challenge Manchester United for Grealish – who has scored nine goals and provided eight assists in 35 games this season – if their asking price is met.

ROUND-UP

- Quique Setien is under increasing pressure at Barcelona. RAC1 reports Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu, chief executive Oscar Grau, sporting director Javier Bordas and technical secretary Eric Abidal met at Setien's house on Monday to discuss the current situation. Trailing Real Madrid by two points in LaLiga, Esport3 says Setien could be fired as early as this week.

- Arsenal have made a decision regarding Dani Ceballos. The Sun says the Premier League club will not make a move to buy the midfielder from Real Madrid when his loan deal expires at the end of the season.

- With Serie A promotion secured, Benevento could be set to strengthen. Gianluca Di Marzio reports the club are set to sign former Chelsea forward Loic Remy, who is coming out of contract at Lille.

- Real Sociedad are leading the chase to sign Real Madrid midfielder Takefusa Kubo on loan next season, according to AS. The 19-year-old has been on loan at Mallorca this season, while Milan are also reportedly interested in the Japan international.

- With Timo Werner joining Chelsea, RB Leipzig have seemingly found a replacement from the forward. According to Sky, Hwang Hee-chan will join Leipzig from Salzburg for about €10million. Hwang has been linked to the likes of Liverpool and Wolves.

- Celtic are reportedly keen to hold onto Fraser Forster. The goalkeeper has been on loan from Southampton this season and The Sun reports Celtic want to buy the former England international.

Barcelona midfielder Arthur and Juventus' Miralem Pjanic are seemingly getting closer to swapping clubs.

The LaLiga and Serie A giants have been linked with numerous moves this close season, but one may be getting close to completion.

Arthur and Pjanic are set to trade places and it could be close to reality.

 

TOP STORY – ARTHUR, PJANIC SET FOR MEDICALS IN TURIN

Barcelona midfielder Arthur and Juventus' Pjanic will undergo medicals on Sunday, according to Sport.

The Catalan sports paper says Arthur flew to Italy on Saturday accompanied by a Barcelona doctor ahead of checks in Turin.

Arthur will then return to Barcelona and finish the season with the LaLiga champions, who slipped up again in their title defence on Saturday as Celta Vigo twice came from behind to earn a 2-2 draw.

ROUND-UP

- Manchester United may still be trying to find a way to land Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho. The Mirror reports United need to sell at least four stars – including Alexis Sanchez and Jesse Lingard – if they are to get a deal done for Sancho.

- Staying at Old Trafford and United could be getting closer to signing Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish. The Daily Express says Grealish has found a house to buy in the North West.

- Chelsea may yet strengthen further ahead of next season. According to The Sun, they are growing confident they will sign West Ham star Declan Rice in the close season.

- Arsenal's decision to re-sign David Luiz has been criticised. However, The Telegraph reports the Brazilian defender agreed to a significant pay cut.

- Tanguy Ndombele's future may be at Tottenham. Football.London reports Spurs have no plans to sell Ndombele at the end of the season, with Jose Mourinho having denied reports of a rift with the midfielder earlier this week.

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer does not know how much money he will have at his disposal in the transfer market amid the coronavirus pandemic.

United have been linked with big money moves for the likes of Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho, Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish and Birmingham City sensation Jude Bellingham among others.

The Red Devils – without a Premier League crown since 2013 – are expected to be active buyers in the market after watching bitter rivals Liverpool claim their first league title since 1990.

However, Solskjaer warned United's plans could be impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, which forced the 2019-20 season to be postponed in March before it returned earlier this month.

"I think the pandemic has hit everyone really hard," Solskjaer said ahead of Saturday's FA Cup quarter-final at Norwich City.

"I still think we need to wait and see how things are panning out to know the real effects of the pandemic, to know what kind of financial state we are in.

"You see some teams invest, some teams don't. We'll have to take a big look at things ourselves to see how hard we've been hit. I know the club has announced a few numbers before.

"It's not for me to say here now we are going to have X amount because I don't really know. I don't really know how hard we have been hit. We are a financially strong club, but we are also probably being hit more than anybody else.

"Let's see how quickly we can get our fans back into the stadium and of course the league position is going to be important for us this season. If we can get a trophy, the FA Cup or the Europa League.

"The Europa League will also qualify us for the Champions League, there's still a lot of uncertainty and these three or four months, every businessman in the world, every footballer in the world, I think everyone is still unsure what the effect will be."

United are fifth in the Premier League through 31 rounds, five points adrift of Chelsea – who occupy the fourth and final Champions League spot.

Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish has been charged with driving without due care and attention, and failing to stop at or report a collision.

Grealish is set to appear in court on August 25 following an alleged incident when he breached lockdown regulations on March 29.

The midfielder was pictured on social media on a Birmingham street next to a Range Rover, which had apparently collided with two parked cars.

Grealish apologised and said he was "deeply embarrassed" after it emerged he had visited a friend's house, breaching government rules that were imposed to try to limit the spread of coronavirus.

West Midlands Police launched an investigation and on Thursday revealed the playmaker, linked with Manchester United, has been charged.

"A Premier League footballer has been charged with driving without due care and attention, and failing to stop at or report a collision," a police statement said.

"Jack Grealish is accused of the offences in Waterside, Dickens Heath, Solihull, on Sunday March 29.

"An investigation was launched after we responded to reports of a car hitting parked vehicles and the driver fleeing on foot.

"The 24-year-old from Barnt Green, Worcestershire, has been postal charged to appear before Birmingham Magistrates Court on August 25."

Grealish donated £150,000 to Birmingham Children's Hospital and raised £55,000 for the NHS by raffling off one of his shirts after breaching lockdown regulations soon after they were imposed.

He played in Villa's goalless draw with Sheffield United behind closed doors at Villa Park on Wednesday, the first game of the Premier League season since it was suspended in March.

Manchester United know what they will need to pay for Aston Villa star Jack Grealish, and they may look elsewhere.

Grealish has been linked with a move to Old Trafford after an impressive campaign with Villa.

However, United could opt for a cheaper alternative.

 

TOP STORY – VILLA WANT £80M FOR MAN UTD TARGET GREALISH

Aston Villa want at least £80million for Jack Grealish amid links to Manchester United, according to the Daily Mail.

The report says Villa also have hope of keeping the attacker if they can avoid Premier League relegation.

Grealish, 24, has scored seven goals and provided six assists in 26 Premier League games this season.

 

ROUND-UP

- Could Manchester United look elsewhere? The Sun reports United are eyeing Bayer Leverkusen forward Leon Bailey as a cheaper alternative to Grealish and Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho.

- Staying at Old Trafford and France Football claims Manchester United have made contact with Willian, who is coming out of contract at Chelsea.

- Miralem Pjanic's Juventus future seems unclear. Sport reports the midfielder is moving away from the Serie A club amid links to Barcelona and Chelsea.

- Perhaps Juventus and Chelsea could be set for a swap deal. The Sun says Chelsea are set to be offered Adrien Rabiot and Federico Bernardeschi for Jorginho and Marcos Alonso.

- Another player who has been linked to Manchester United is Birmingham City teenager Jude Bellingham. However, BILD reports Borussia Dortmund have reached an agreement with the 16-year-old midfielder, but are having problems with the transfer fee.

- On loan at Borussia Dortmund since 2018, Achraf Hakimi is due to return to Real Madrid. However, AS reports Bayern Munich are eager to sign the full-back and are willing to offer a sizeable transfer fee and salary.

Jadon Sancho has been linked to Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea and Real Madrid among others.

Sancho is reportedly looking to leave Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund.

But a reunion with former club Manchester City could be on the cards for the England international.

 

TOP STORY – SANCHO WILLING TO RE-JOIN CITY

Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho is open to returning to Manchester City, according to The Sun.

Sancho is tipped to leave Dortmund at the end of the coronavirus-hit 2019-20 season amid strong links to Manchester United, as well as Liverpool, Chelsea, Real Madrid and Barcelona.

However, Sancho is believed to be willing to re-join City – the club he left for Dortmund in 2017.

 

ROUND-UP

- With uncertainty over Sancho, United could turn to Jack Grealish. The Daily Star says Aston Villa captain Grealish has his heart set on moving to Old Trafford.

Tottenham want to sign Paris Saint-Germain centre-back Thiago Silva, reports The Sun. Silva is set to leave the Ligue 1 champions on a free transfer and Jose Mourinho is keen to bring the Brazil defender to Spurs. Arsenal and Everton are also eyeing the 35-year-old.

- Corriere della Sera says Gianluigi Donnarumma is ready to extend his contract with Milan, though the new deal could include a €60million release clause. The Italy international goalkeeper has previously been linked to the likes of Juventus, Madrid, PSG and United.

- Roma star Lorenzo Pellegrini is committed to staying at the capital club despite reported interest from Juve, United and PSG, claims Sky Sport Italia and Tuttomercatoweb.

Arsenal are close to agreeing a deal for Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey, according to Cadena COPE. Atletico are determined to renew Partey's contract but the LaLiga side are resigned to losing the Ghana international – who has also been linked to United.

Jack Grealish or Jadon Sancho at Old Trafford?

Manchester United have been linked to both players.

But Aston Villa's Grealish has reportedly surged ahead of Borussia Dortmund star Jadon as United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer eyes reinforcements.

 

TOP STORY – GREALISH LEAPFROGS SANCHO AS UTD TARGET

Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish has moved ahead of Jadon Sancho on Manchester United's wishlist, according to the Mirror.

United have been tipped to sign Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho at the end of the coronavirus-hit 2019-20 season.

But Grealish now reportedly tops United's list of transfer targets due to Dortmund's demands.

 

ROUND-UP

- Marca reports Barcelona risk losing out on signing Inter forward Lautaro Martinez. The LaLiga champions are favourites to prise Martinez to Camp Nou but they are yet to agree a deal. Now, United and Real Madrid are waiting in the wings.

Inter remain hopeful of signing Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal, says Calciomercato. It comes as the Nerazzurri also target Brescia sensation Sandro Tonali.

- The Mirror claims Liverpool have turned their attention to signing Wolves star Adama Traore as RB Leipzig's Timo Werner looks set to join Premier League rivals Chelsea.

Madrid have made an €80million offer for Bayer Leverkusen's Kai Havertz, according to Bild. The deal would also see Havertz stay at Leverkusen on loan next season. The in-demand Germany international is also reportedly wanted by Bayern Munich, United and Liverpool.

- The Daily Mail reports United are looking to hijack Madrid's pursuit of Ajax star Donny van de Beek.

- Paris Saint-Germain forward Edinson Cavani has turned down Inter as he heads to Atletico Madrid on a free transfer, says Tuttosport.

Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish regrets breaking the United Kingdom's lockdown rules but does not believe he should be defined by his mistake.

In late March, Grealish was pictured on social media on a Birmingham street next to his Range Rover, which had collided with two parked cars. The incident is being investigated by West Midlands Police.

Grealish later apologised and said he was "deeply embarrassed" after it emerged he had visited a friend's house, thereby flouting government restrictions that were imposed to try and limit the spread of coronavirus.

Just a day earlier, Grealish had taken to social media to urge people to follow protocols and he has since donated £150,000 to Birmingham Children's Hospital and raised £55,000 for the NHS by raffling off one of his shirts.

Grealish acknowledged his error of judgement, telling reporters: "I knew straight away that I had to come out and apologise myself, which I wanted to do; I didn't want to hide behind a club statement.

"I know I am a footballer but I'm still human and we all make mistakes and straight away I knew I'd made a mistake. 

"I'm also a role model as well to a lot of people out there, especially young children who might look up to me. So I try to act in respectable manner but since then I have tried to keep my head down, work hard and do as much charitable work as possible."

Grealish says people will always focus on his errors despite his efforts to make amends.

"That's just the way things are in this world that we live in. Everyone knows when you do something it's always going to be the bad stuff that gets out there," he added. 

"That's what I have to deal with. I respect my job, absolutely love what I do, and wouldn't change it for the world."

The Premier League is set to return later this month after a three-month hiatus due to the COVID-19 crisis.

Villa's return to training was overshadowed by the death of the father of manager Dean Smith as a result of coronavirus.

With Villa two points adrift of safety with a game in hand, Grealish said the squad is even more determined to avoid relegation for the Smith family.

"I always used to ask him every day how his dad was getting on," Grealish said. "Then when the news came it was devastating for him and his family. Us as players have tried to be there for him and try to help him. 

"One good thing about football when you are having a problem away off the pitch, when you do come into training or play a match, it takes your mind off everything else. It certainly does for me. That's what we tried to do for the manager.

"I'm sure we all want to avoid relegation even more now, for the Smith family."

Jack Grealish possesses the natural talent to play for Manchester United or any big club, according to former Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill.

Midfielder Grealish has long been linked with a move to Old Trafford, with Red Devils manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said to have identified him as a prime target to bolster his midfield.

With clubs facing uncertainty over the coming months due to the coronavirus crisis, it remains unclear whether United or any other side will be prepared to spend significant sums on the likes of Grealish this year.

But while he is cautious of passing judgement on whether Grealish would thrive at a major club, O'Neill certainly thinks the 24-year-old has enough ability.

Speaking to Stats Perform News, he said: "On Grealish's future, that's difficult to say. He's a big fans' favourite and Villa is his football club as well.

Are you saying, 'Does he have the ability to play for Manchester United'? Certainly, the natural talent to play for any of the big clubs – there's no question about that.

"I just don't know enough and I'm in no position to make that judgement."

Grealish's future may also depend on whether Villa can avoid relegation from the Premier League this season.

The club have spent in the region of £143million on new signings since winning promotion via the Championship play-offs last term.

Despite the huge investment, Dean Smith's side are 19th in the table and two points from safety, although they have a game in hand on their nearest rivals.

O'Neill, who was in charge at Villa Park from 2006 to 2010, has been surprised to see his old side struggle in the top flight and is concerned they have become too dependent on their captain.

"My own view was that they had a super end to the Championship season, they were the best team in it by a long distance, I felt," he said.

"I honestly thought that they wouldn't have too much difficulty in staying up. They've put some money in, a lot of money in, some people say between 130 and 150 million pounds.

"So, I didn't expect them to struggle at all this season. I expected it to be difficult, but not to struggle.

"I met Jack Grealish a number of years ago when we wanted him to play for the Republic of Ireland and he chose to play with England, no problem with that whatsoever – his father is English and he had played underage football for the Republic of Ireland, he made that decision and that's absolutely fine.

"He's very strong; he's much stronger than he was five years ago, a quality player, hard to rob.

"You would hope that, at the end, Villa would have enough to pull themselves around and see it through. Of course, if you're depending on one player, which they have been over the past couple of months, that can cause a problem."

Have Barcelona found their new Dani Alves?

According to reports in Spain, the Blagurana have identified Ajax teenager Sergino Dest as the long-term solution to their problematic right-back spot.

Despite his inexperience, it seems the 19-year-old could command a sizeable eight-figure sum.

 

TOP STORY – DEST THE BEST FOR BARCA

Nelson Semedo's proposed move to either Manchester City or Juventus looks set to pave the way for Barca to bring in a highly rated new right-back.

And the Catalan club know exactly what it will take to land their preferred target: €20million.

That is the fee Spanish newspaper Sport suggests will be enough to secure United States defender Dest when the transfer window reopens.

The Dutch-born full-back, who spurned Netherlands' interest in his international future, only recently graduated from Ajax's youth setup, making 15 Eredivisie starts before the coronavirus pandemic curtailed his breakthrough 2019-20 campaign.

 

ROUND-UP

- AC Milan are interested in Freiburg centre-back Robin Koch but the Rossoneri could face competition from Serie A rivals Napoli, claims CalcioMercato.

- Heading across town and Inter appear more interested in attacking reinforcements amid the uncertainty surrounding Lautaro Martinez. La Repubblica suggests the Nerazzurri are on the cusp of agreeing personal terms with Napoli forward Dries Mertens, who will become a free agent on June 30.

- Is a transfer battle brewing in Manchester? The Sun claims City boss Pep Guardiola wants to beat crosstown rivals United to Argentine attacking midfielder Thiago Almada, the promising Velez product said to be viewed as the successor to David Silva.

- Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and United could encounter more transfer frustration if Aston Villa continue to stand firm over their Jack Grealish valuation. According to the Mirror, relegation-threatened Villa are not prepared to budge on their £80m asking price.

- Ligue 1 heavyweights Paris Saint-Germain could move for experienced former Arsenal right-back Mathieu Debuchy, now of Saint-Etienne, to replace the out-of-contract Thomas Meunier, reports Le10Sport.

Barcelona's pursuit of Lautaro Martinez continues – and they are reportedly offering up six players as part of the deal.

The LaLiga giants continue to be linked with a move for the Inter star, although reports suggest they are likely to struggle to get a deal done.

The latest report shows just how much difficulty they are facing.

 

TOP STORY – BARCA OFFER INTER CHOICE OF SIX PLAYERS FOR LAUTARO

Barcelona are offering Inter a list of six players for Martinez, according to Sport.

It says Barca would hope to offload two of the six players plus €60million to get a deal done.

Arturo Vidal, Samuel Umtiti, Nelson Semedo, Junior Firpo, Rafinha and Jean-Clair Todibo are the players they are reportedly prepared to offer.

ROUND-UP

- Manchester United continue to be linked with a move for Jack Grealish. The Sun reports the Premier League giants are stepping up their pursuit of the Aston Villa star in a £50m move.

- Staying at Old Trafford and Sport reports Marc Jurado has rejected a contract renewal from Barcelona and will instead join Manchester United.

- Talk around Philippe Coutinho continues. With Newcastle United potentially being taken over, Mauricio Pochettino has been linked with the top job and Mundo Deportivo reports one of the Argentine coach's first wishes would be signing Coutinho from Barcelona.

- Manchester City are reportedly looking to strengthen their defence during the upcoming close season. Sport reports the Premier League side are willing to pay £30.6m (€35m) for Marseille defender Boubacar Kamara.

- Javi Martinez and Jerome Boateng could be set for Bayern Munich exits. Kicker reports Bayern are preparing to sell the duo this close season, with both coming out of contract in 2021.

- Are Newcastle United looking for a new goalkeeper? Sport 24 reports they are looking at Benfica and Greece goalkeeper Odysseas Vlachodimos, with the Primeira Liga club wanting £17.5m (€20m) for the shot-stopper.

Rumoured Manchester United target Jack Grealish is destined to move to a bigger club than Aston Villa, according to his team-mate Conor Hourihane.

Grealish has been the standout performer in a Villa side who have been fighting against relegation from the Premier League this term having come up via the Championship play-offs last season.

The 24-year-old boyhood Villa fan has scored seven goals and contributed six assists, form which has resulted in him being linked with a move away.

United are thought to be among those interested, particularly after Grealish starred in a 2-2 draw at Old Trafford in December, and Hourihane feels his fellow midfielder will soon be turning out for an elite side.

"He's top, top class," Republic of Ireland international Hourihane told The Southern Star's sport podcast.

"In terms of pure ability and just sheer skill and technique level he's probably easily the best player I've played with to date.

"He's just got that gift. He runs quicker with the ball when he faces someone up, you're in real trouble. He's skipping by the best players in this league so, so easily.

"How he's developed over the three years I've been here – he's taken his game to a new level – especially this year in the Premier League.

"I felt like in the Championship last year he was a real catalyst for us when he came back from injury. But he's taken his game to a new level since he's come to the Premier League.

"He's took it by storm really. The England team and getting that big move is only a matter of time because, if I'm being brutally honest, he's too good for our team at Aston Villa."

Grealish is under contract with Villa until 2023 having only signed a new deal in 2018.

Harry Kane and Jack Grealish would be welcome additions at Manchester United according to Mark Bosnich, who feels his former club are moving in the right direction under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

United were on an 11-match unbeaten run in all competitions when the COVID-19 crisis brought a halt to much of competitive football globally.

As such, when the close season arrives, any Old Trafford overhaul might not be as drastic as first imagined.

Nevertheless, ex-Australia goalkeeper Bosnich told Stats Perform a high-end addition in attack would be ideal, even though he acknowledges a high asking price and Tottenham's notorious hard-ball tactics in the transfer market could make acquiring Kane a tough ask.

"I think they need another striker, another big attacking player," he said.

"What the run and improvement has done is bought Manchester United time and put them a little bit more in a position of strength.

"I'd be looking for a striker to complete that spine. You're thinking Bruno Fernandes, Harry Maguire, David De Gea... Marcus Rashford you could have probably added to that but with the injury and so forth you're considering someone who can help him lead the line. A big signing up in the middle.

"Harry Kane would be absolutely fantastic for Manchester United. Whether or not Tottenham would let him go, I don't know, and the price tag they were talking about [a reported £200million] I thought was ridiculous.

"But definitely somebody of that ilk. Harry Kane has been one of the best strikers of his generation, not just in England, across the world. That would be a fantastic coup."

Bosnich made the switch from Aston Villa to United in 2001, having previously played for the club from 1989 to 1991, while Dwight Yorke made the same move in 1998 in a deal that proved pivotal to the Red Devils' treble triumph.

Current Villa Park favourite Jack Grealish has been touted for a similar move and, were United to firm up any interest in the playmaker, it is a situation that would understandably leave Bosnich with mixed emotions.

"I'd be happy for him – from an Aston Villa perspective, no; from a Manchester United perspective, yes," he said.

"I’d be delighted for him if he went. His performances have been outstanding.

"I was so impressed [in 2018] when they lost to Fulham at Wembley in the Championship play-off final. He could have left then and had every right to, but fact that he stayed to help Villa get up really, really impressed me."

Villa are second bottom in the Premier League, two points from safety with 10 games of the suspended season remaining, and Bosnich feels the Birmingham club's fate in that regard remains the prime factor looming over Grealish's future.

"If it happened again and Villa were to go down, he's entitled to leave after staying and doing what he did. He's done a brilliant job for Aston Villa," he added.

"I'm sure the vast majority of supporters would like him to stay but if a player has had his head turned and doesn't want to be there you get the best possible price and go and replace him.

"But the key thing to focus on now for [head coach] Dean Smith, [assistant] John Terry and Jack Grealish is to keep Aston Villa up."

Jack Grealish has issued an apology and said he is "deeply embarrassed" after ignoring coronavirus lockdown measures to attend a party over the weekend.

West Midlands Police launched an investigation after they were called to the Dickens Heath area of Solihull, where two parked cars suffered minor damage.

Aston Villa captain Grealish appeared to be pictured at the scene on social media following the incident.

Grealish had urged the public to stay at home just a day earlier after the Government last week enforced a lockdown and the midfielder has expressed his regret over failing to heed his own warning.

"Hi everybody. I just want to do a quick video message just to say how deeply embarrassed I am about what has happened this weekend." he said in a video posted on his Twitter account.

"I know it's a tough time for everyone at the moment, being locked indoors for so long and I obviously just got a call off a friend asking to go round to his. I stupidly agreed to do so.

"I don't want anyone to make the same mistake that I did, so obviously I urge everyone to stay at home and follow the rules and the guidelines of what we've been asked to do.

"I know for a fact that I'll be doing that in the near future now and obviously, like I said, I urge everyone to do the same.

"I hope everyone can accept my apology and we can move on from this, and hopefully obviously in the near future we can all be out enjoying ourselves again, once this has all boiled over. So cheers guys and thank you."

A Villa statement confirmed Grealish would receive a fine, with the money going to a local hospitals charity.

It read: "Aston Villa is deeply disappointed that one of our players ignored the Government's guidance on staying at home during the coronavirus crisis. 

"Club captain Jack Grealish has accepted that his decision to leave his house was wrong and entirely unnecessary. It breached the government guidelines which are clear and should be adhered to by everybody. 

"The player will be disciplined and fined with the proceeds donated to The University Hospitals Charity in Birmingham."

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