Jose Mourinho calls for Jack Grealish to START England’s Euro 2020 semi-final with Denmark but admits Aston Villa captain ‘doesn’t look like he’s an option’ for Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate after his peripheral role in the tournament so far
- Jose Mourinho believes Jack Grealish should start for England against Denmark
- The Aston Villa midfielder has struggled for regular game time at Euro 2020
- Grealish has been used off the bench, playing a starring role in the Germany win
- Mourinho says a team with Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips ‘needs’ Grealish’s skill
- Gareth Southgate is considering whether or not to bring Bukayo Saka back in
- Find out the latest Euro 2020 news including fixtures, live action and results here
Jose Mourinho has called for England boss Gareth Southgate to start Jack Grealish in tonight’s mammoth Euro 2020 semi-final with Denmark.
The Aston Villa midfielder has been a huge favourite among Three Lions fans this summer, leading to widespread calls for Grealish to be given more game time by Southgate.
The 25-year-old has largely been used as an impact player so far. He came off the bench and had a starring role in the last-16 victory over Germany, crossing for Harry Kane’s goal, and also played 27 minutes in the 0-0 draw with Scotland.
Jose Mourinho has called for Gareth Southgate to start Jack Grealish against Denmark tonight
Mourinho says a team with Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips ‘needs’ Grealish’s ability in midfield
In the one game he has started, Grealish was a deciding factor in the 1-0 victory over the Czech Republic, crossing for Raheem Sterling to head home for the goal’s only game.
Grealish was an unused substitute in the thumping 4-0 win over Ukraine in the quarter-finals and looks likely to start on the bench against the Danes in front of 60,000 fans at Wembley.
But Mourinho says he would throw the playmaker in from the start, insisting ‘a team always needs a player like Grealish’ to play ahead of holding midfielders Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips.
‘Everybody knows I am very, very Grealish,’ Mourinho told talkSPORT Breakfast this morning.
‘I like the guy because he never hides, he creates unbalanced situations for defenders, he’s brave.
‘When a team is so solid like England, especially with Rice and Phillips in front of the back-four, I believe a team always needs a player like Grealish.
‘It doesn’t look like he’s an option to start with Gareth, and Gareth is right, especially if England win the Euros – Gareth is right and we are wrong. I would play Grealish but it doesn’t look like he will start.
‘He has a choice between Foden and Saka on the right and I think they are going to start with Saka.’
Grealish is competing with Mason Mount, Jadon Sancho, Phil Foden, Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford and Raheem Sterling for minutes in a talented England squad
Despite Denmark playing with a wing-back system, Southgate is set to keep faith with the four-man defence that started the 4-0 win over Ukraine.
Southgate’s biggest selection decision will be whether he reinstates Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka in the starting XI ahead of Jadon Sancho, who started the quarter-final.
Saka, who started against Germany, is available for selection after recovering from a slight ankle knock and is hopeful of getting the nod.
As Sportsmail reported on Wednesday, Southgate has spoken to his squad about the importance of substitutions for tonight’s clash.
That could open the door for Grealish to come off the bench and make his fourth appearance of the tournament.
The England boss is also understood to have stressed to his squad that personnel changes may well be a decisive factor in Wednesday night’s semi-final.
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