Ferdinand discusses why Jack Grealish 'just edges it' over James Maddison

Rio Ferdinand has praised Jack Grealish and James Maddison, but believes the Aston Villa captain ‘just edges it’ when discussing the abilities of the midfield duo.

Grealish and Maddison have emerged as two of England’s most talented attacking midfield players this season at Aston Villa and Leicester respectively, with both players in the thoughts of England manager Gareth Southgate and being linked with big-money moves.

Manchester United have been strongly linked with moves for both players as Ole Gunnar Solskajer seeks additional midfield creativity this summer, though Ferdinand believes his former side should prioritise a move for Grealish who he rates as a more well-rounded player.

Speaking on a Q&A session on his Instagram account, Ferdinand said: “Grealish or Maddison? That’s a good question. They’re both flying, both done unbelievably well over the last year. They’re very different players.

“Maddison is someone who can get the ball, he can pop it about.

“He gets goals, gets assists, sets up chances, he’s sharp, he gets in good positions to create things. Very good footballer. I like him.

“Grealish does all of that but he has one thing over all these players we talk about in this position for England like Dele Alli, Maddison, Mason Mount in that position, that attacking… that can play off the striker, that can play as an attacking midfielder.

“Grealish can take people on. Grealish gets the ball, he can manipulate the ball, draw players to him… draw one/two players to him leaving space for someone else.

“That’s what I like about Grealish. He’s got that bit of arrogance as well. Knows he’s a good player that’s producing.

“He just edges it for me.”

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