By George Brooks
Tim Sherwood believes that Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish has an outside chance of making the England squad for the 2018 World Cup.
The former Premier League manager coached the 22-year-old during as time Villa boss.
At that time, his Premier League performances in a Villa shirt had promoted some people to suggest that he was good enough for an international call-up.
Grealish has not started a league game for Villa since April. He has missed most of this campaign with a kidney injury he suffered in a pre-season friendly against Watford.
He pledged his international future to England in 2015, having also been eligible to play for the Republic of Ireland.
The player is on his way back from injury and hoping to force his way into the Villa side. Sherwood believes that Grealish is not as far away from an England call-up as some people might think.
“Where England are missing is probably creativity and to be comfortable handling the football in the centre of the park,”Sherwood told The Debate on Sky Sports Premier League (Wednesday, 10pm).
“I use someone who I know is way off the scene at the moment, a guy I coached: Jack Grealish. Jack Grealish can handle the football, he knows what it’s like to handle the football, the ball is his friend.
“He’s a millions miles away from that, but perhaps he’s not, perhaps he’s not a million miles away if he can get himself noticed.”
England manager Gareth Southgate has been praised for giving young players, manager of whom do not play regular club football, a chance on the international stage.
Villa fans will be hoping that Grealish can give the England boss something to think about when he returns from injury.
Steve Bruce’s side are currently sixth in the Championship table and face Queens Park Rangers at Loftus Road on Saturday.