Rio Ferdinand claims Jack Grealish is the best player in the Premier League

Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has labelled Jack Grealish as the “best player in the league”, with the Aston Villa skipper in stunning form.

After keeping his boyhood side in the Premier League last season, Grealish has helped inspire Villa to an impressive first half to this campaign.

With two games in hand on Liverpool, prior to the weekend’s fixtures, Villa sit just five points off the top-four and potential Champions League qualification.

Grealish has a remarkable 18 goal involvements in 21 games this term, with many believing he is deserving of a starting place for England in this summer’s delayed Euro 2020.

It’s a position that has immense competition, with Leicester City’s James Maddison, Phil Foden at Man City and Chelsea ’s Mason Mount all in the running.

When comparing the players vying for that No.10 spot for England, Ferdinand was asked by fellow BT Sport pundit Robbie Savage, who he would pay to watch – with his answer an emphatic one.

“Grealish. I love watching him,” he started.  “If I’m going to watch a player and I’m putting him at No.10 I want to see someone drift past people, draw people to them, create space for other players and then get assists and get goals.

“There’s a great argument for Maddison, there’s a great argument for other players.

“Grealish is the best player in the league right now, on form. He’s been the best player this season.”

Ferdinand has been public in his admiration for Grealish, urging the Red Devils to seal a move for him “whether Pogba goes or not”.

United were heavily linked with the 25-year-old in the summer, with Villa ultimately managing to retain the services of the midfielder, before agreeing terms on a new deal.

Ferdinand’s claim comes just days after teammate Emi Martinez compared Grealish to his international colleague and Barcelona icon Lionel Messi.

“He is the most talented player I’ve ever seen,” Martinez told talkSPORT. “He never gives the ball away. When I see Grealish running, it’s always a shot on target or a corner for us. He will drive past two or three players.

“I just see Messi with a right foot when he has the ball. You can’t get the ball off him.

“Messi is Messi, he’s the best ever. But in terms of training, when Jack has the ball, people don’t want to tackle him, they respect him, he can finish, he can chop, he can do everything.

“When I train with Messi for the national team, it’s the same. Nobody wants to touch him, he chops people, he treats players like cones.

“I see that with Jack here.”

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