Football

Aston Villa offer Jack Grealish shirt swaps after Manchester City move

Aston Villa captain, Jack Grealish, has called on the Premier League to continue.

Aston Villa have announced that they will offer shirt swaps for fans who have purchased their 2021-22 season strip with Jack Grealish’s name and number on the back, following confirmation of his record-breaking move to Manchester City.

The former Villans skipper swapped the Midlands for the Premier League champions in a £100 million ($139m) move to the Etihad Stadium on Thursday, signing a six-year deal.

Though Villa had hoped to stave off any potential bids with a hefty nine-figure release clause, they have now seen their captain leave and have told supporters that they will be able to trade in their tops for a new one if they so choose.

“Aston Villa would like to offer the opportunity of a shirt exchange to those supporters who purchased this season’s shirt printed with Jack Grealish’s name and number on the back,” the club confirmed in a statement on Friday .

“The exchange offer only applies to 2021-22 home and away jerseys purchased between 14 July 2021 and 5 August 2021 and only for purchases made in the official club store at Villa Park or online.

“A proof of purchase will be required and a like-for-like exchange will only be offered in exchange for a surrendered jersey.”

With the exit of their captain, Villa have moved to confirm his squad replacement amid a busy transfer window, with reported record signing Emi Buendia handed Grealish’s old squad number 10.

The Argentine, a double Championship winner with Norwich before his arrival at Villa Park, is the headline name of a raft of impressive captures for Dean Smith’s side.

Other faces through the door include former club hero Ashley Young, returning from a Serie A-winning stint with Inter, alongside Bayer Leverkusen’s Leon Bailey and Southampton’s Danny Ings, moves made affordable by the hefty sum paid out for Grealish by City.

Having confirmed that they never intended to replace Grealish with just one player, Villa look to have recruited shrewdly ahead of a season opener with Watford on August 14.

There will be no reunion in the Premier League with their former player until November at the earliest, but Smith will instead be looking to transition his side into potential European contenders long before then.

Grealish, meanwhile, could make his debut as early as City’s FA Community Shield clash with Leicester City, though he may be made to wait for a top-flight clash with Tottenham on August 15 instead.

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