Derby card will bring a derby ban for Jack!

Birmingham Post - - SPORT -

JACK Gre­al­ish is keen to en­sure he’s not sus­pended for the big derby with Blues.

The Villa at­tacker, who scored and pro­vided an as­sist in the vic­tory over Bolton last week, is wary of his pre­car­i­ous dis­ci­plinary sit­u­a­tion.

The 23-year-old has played the last five matches with four book­ings to his name and knows an­other – against Derby on Satur­day – would rule him out of the fix­ture at Villa Park on Sun­day, Novem­ber 25.

“They are all big games, you don’t get any easy games in this league, ev­ery game is a tough game, if you are play­ing some­one at the bot­tom it’s a tough game,” said Gre­al­ish.

“We are just go­ing to take each game as it comes. For me per­son­ally, I need not to get an­other yel­low card, I have got one left now for about an­other four or five games, that’s my aim.”

Asked about the im­pend­ing visit of Blues, he said: “That’s the one I am look­ing for­ward to the most.”

Villa will play host to the Cham­pi­onship’s high­est gate of the sea­son af­ter con­firm­ing ev­ery seat has been sold for the Blues clash. Al­most 41,500 fans will be in­side Villa Park, to eclipse the 41,336 crowd who wit­nessed Dean Smith’s first match in charge against Swansea City.

And Gre­al­ish has a close affin­ity with his new boss – and reck­ons it’s al­ready pay­ing off on the pitch.

Gre­al­ish’s love for the club, as a player who once watched his beloved Villa from the stands, is un­bri­dled and well-doc­u­mented.

It was a big rea­son why he didn’t han­ker for a move in the sum­mer when Premier League gi­ants Tot­ten­ham came call­ing.

And now he’s not the only one with claret and blue cours­ing through his veins.

Smith, who was ap­pointed as Steve Bruce’s suc­ces­sor last month, was also a boy­hood Villa sup­porter. And, like Gre­al­ish, Smith, who grew up in Great Barr, comes from a fam­ily of Villa fans.

“I am lov­ing work­ing with him,” Gre­al­ish said of his new men­tor. “It’s nice for me as well be­cause he’s an As­ton Villa fan. His whole fam­ily are As­ton Villa sup­port­ers just like mine. We get on well.”

Gre­al­ish has had, by his own stan­dards, a quiet start to the cam­paign, yet he took his goal against Bolton with all the poise and pur­pose of a red-hot striker.

Smith said the goal was a di­rect prod­uct of the pat­terns he and Gre­al­ish had worked on in prepa­ra­tion for the game. And the 23-year-old was in full agree­ment.

“He has been work­ing hard with me on the train­ing field on one or two things,” Gre­al­ish said. “I’m not go­ing to give away the tac­tics but on Fri­day night it def­i­nitely paid off.”

> Jack Gre­al­ish

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