Jack Grealish apologised to Miguel Almiron after comments he made about the Newcastle United attacker last season, he said in an interview with The Telegraph.
After Manchester City came back from two goals down to win the Premier League title on the final day of last season, the squad was in celebration mode.
Pep Guardiola substituted Bernardo Silva, who was having a bad game, for Ilkay Gundogan. The German midfielder came on and scored twice.
During the title celebrations, Grealish claimed Silva had played like Almiron and had to come off for Gundogan.
“Do you know what, I haven’t actually been asked about that and let me just address it,” the England international said.
“Obviously, I’d had a few drinks. We were out celebrating and I wasn’t on my phone on social media. And then I remember I was in Ibiza and it had come out. That was one thing I regret. When I said earlier that sometimes I do stupid stuff, that was one.
“I regret that. I swear, I’m actually buzzing the way he’s reacted. He said something about me in an interview the other day, he wished me the best.
“I thought ‘what a guy, man’ because if that was me and somebody had said that about me, I’d have probably been the other way.”
Grealish said he tried to apologise through a former teammate.
“I messaged Matt Targett because I’m close with him from Villa and I said to him ‘can you message him for me and say to him that I apologise – I obviously didn’t mean it’,” he added.
“When I look back on that, that was just one thing that was stupid of me to say. I shouldn’t have said it.
“I didn’t realise it was a video to go out – I thought it was just private. But even in private I shouldn’t have said it because he’s a fellow professional. I’m actually buzzing for him – I’ve had a lot of stick off the Newcastle fans and rightly so.
“At the end of the day, they are backing their player which I fully understand. He seems like the most harmless, nice guy, so fair play.
“When I play against him, I’ll show him the most respect because that’s what he’s done in a situation where he probably didn’t have to. Fair play to him and I genuinely hope he does keep scoring, as long as those Newcastle fans stop messaging me.”
Following the criticism, Almiron has exploded this season. The Paraguayan forward has eight goals and one assist in 15 Premier League games.
Almiron has been one of the best players in the league this season. He is one of the most improved players in the league.
By contrast, Grealish is still struggling to nail down a consistent spot in Guardiola’s XI. However, his performances are notably better despite scoring just once this term.
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