Jack Grealish: ‘I’m just a normal kid who would be watching England at Euro 2020 with my mates’

Jack Grealish does not understand how he has become England’s poster boy, but such adulation makes him all the more determined to help Gareth Southgate’s side make history.

The 25-year-old may have only won 10 senior caps and played 115 minutes of major tournament football, but the Aston Villa playmaker has already established himself as a fan favourite.

‘Super Jack’ echoed around Wembley before his introduction as a second-half substitute against Germany in Tuesday’s mammoth Euro 2020 last-16 tie.

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Grealish went on to play a role in both goals as England secured a famous 2-0 win and set up tomorrow’s quarter-final against Ukraine.

England's Jack Grealish during a training session at St George's Park, Burton upon Trent. (Picture: Nick Potts/PA Wire. )

“It’s unbelievable,” he said with a grin. “It’s obviously one of the best feelings ever when they’re calling for your name. It’s weird.

“It’s nice when Villa fans are doing it, but you kind of expect it because you are one of them. But when it’s England fans, it’s different.

“But it’s honestly an unbelievable feeling. I always try and play with a smile on my face because I’m doing what I love.

“But then again, I think if I wasn’t a footballer and I was just with my mates and stuff I would just to be doing what they’re doing. I’d be travelling everywhere watching England, being in pubs and stuff.

History boys - Jack Grealish, Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips of England celebrate after victory in the UEFA Euro 2020 Championship Round of 16 match against Germany at Wembley Stadium (Picture: Eddie Keogh - The FA/The FA via Getty Images)

“I think I’d be at Boxpark (venues in London screening the matches). I’ve seen a few videos of that and it looked unreal, so I think that’s what I’d be doing, because at the end of the day I’m just a normal kid.

“As I’ve grown up, that’s probably one of the hardest things that I’ve had to deal with.

“I speak to my family about it all the time, because when I go out and do stuff and I look at what my friends are doing and that, I’d love to be like that sometimes and just go and do stuff.”

Grealish has learned the hard way about life in the public eye, having found himself under the spotlight for the wrong reasons at times.

“Of course (I’ve learned from my mistakes),” he said. “That’s the only thing you can do. Deep down I am still the Jack when I was young and I will never not be that person.”