By Graham Hill
VILLA chief executive Chrstian Purslow says the club have no intention of selling skipper Jack Grealish admitting: He is the heart and soul of this club.
Promotion back to the Premier League means Villa will not be forced to let Grealish go.
But Purslow says Villa’s ambition means that the player will also not want to go.
Villa are well aware that Grealish has his sights set on an England place as well as having success at club level.
But the message from the highest levels at Villa Park is that Grealish does not need to worry about the direction the club will be taking.
Purslow told Radio WM: “I really don’t think we want to be a selling club. We are Aston Villa.
“Jack Grealish signed a five-year deal in my second week here last September. He is the heart and soul and face of this club.
“He is a wonderfully gifted player and I am so pleased the nation and the world will now be able to watch Jack Grealish every week.
“I have no interest in selling Jack Grealish. He will lead us into the Premier League.”
Boss Dean Smith is already working with Purslow to decide on player personnel for next season with Glenn Whelan, Mile Jedinak, Albert Adomah, Tommy Elphick and Alan Hutton coming to the end of their contracts.
But Purslow says it is vital the club take a step back and weigh up the reality of being back in the top flight.
Previous regimes have made so many bad buys and Purslow says those days must not return.
He added: “We had a player recruitment Plan A and Plan B for those two possible outcomes.
“But I think the hypothetical planning over the last three or four months is not quite the same as waking up with the reality of being a Premier League club.
“I am encouraging my colleagues to pause, cold towel and contemplate carefully exactly where we will make additions this summer and on the players leaving us and who those players will be.
“This is not a moment to rush, or a moment to get carried away in the euphoria.
“This is the moment when poorly run businesses and poorly run football clubs make mistakes. We do not want to do that. We are prepared. The decisions of the board, in terms of where we prioritise, we will take a little time to nail those down.”