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"I Was Really Close to Going!" - Jack Grealish Reveals Transfer Story Prior to Man City Decision

Manchester City's new £100 million man has revealed just how close he was to making a very different transfer decision, one year prior to his Etihad switch.

Jack Grealish made the switch from Birmingham to Manchester in the summer, when Pep Guardiola's side activated the record-breaking release clause in his contract with Aston Villa. 

Grealish started the season as a regular in Manchester City's starting line-up, but injury problems have kept him out of action in recent weeks, which has seen the return of Raheem Sterling to the forefront. 

Manchester City's latest signing made his return from injury on Wednesday night in the Premier League victory over his old club, where he was booed by home fans as he came off the bench. 

Now, Jack Grealish has told The Telegraph in an exclusive interview this week that he was close to signing for bitter local rivals Manchester United, just one year before pulling on a sky blue shirt for the first time.

I was really close to going, but nothing happened in the end,” he confirmed in an in-depth interview published on Wednesday.

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Grealish continued, “We played (Manchester) United in a pre-season game on Saturday and I wasn’t supposed to play in a cup game at Burton. But after the United game I said to [Aston Villa CEO Christian] Purslow and my agent ‘if I’m not leaving, I’ll sign my new contract’."

While Manchester United's interest in Jack Grealish was no secret at the time, many fans will be surprised to hear how close the transfer actually was from happening. 

Grealish did not confirm in the interview exactly what stopped him from joining Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side, but Manchester City will certainly be glad the transfer didn't go through.

Instead, Grealish signed a new contract that included the £100 million release clause Manchester City would go on to activate a season later.

The England international explained to the Telegraph, "We all agreed on the clause and if any team hit that, it’s a win-win because it means I’ve had an unbelievable season and Villa got £100 million.”

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