Pep Guardiola was full of praise for the 'incredible' Jack Grealish after Man City swept aside Aston Villa on Saturday, but admitted that the Aston Villa midfielder was 'too expensive' for his side to sign as things stand.
The Citizens comfortably saw off their visitors thanks to goals from Raheem Sterling, David Silva and Ilkay Gundogan, but it was Grealish's performance which caught the Man City boss' eye.
Speaking after the match on Saturday, Guardiola lauded the Villa captain's performance and character but, quoted by the Daily Mail, the Spaniard claimed that he would cost too much for even Man City to lure away from Villa Park.
"He's incredible," Guardiola said. "
The Aston Villa number ten was vital to his boyhood club's promotion success last season, returning from injury to carry his side to the playoffs, where they defeated Frank Lampard's Derby County in the final at Wembley Stadium.
"He's a talented player who always creates something. An exceptional player but too expensive for Manchester!"
Grealish put in a determined display against Guardiola's men, but was powerless in stopping the league champions from inevitably stamping their authority over proceedings. The 24-year-old was then forced off through injury after suffering a nasty blow to his calf, and looked in considerable pain.
The England Under-21 international is a doubt for Villa's upcoming Carabao Cup clash with Wolverhampton Wanderers, after leaving the Etihad stadium on crutches.
The Villans face another stern test next week, when they host current Premier League leaders Liverpool at Villa Park, and Dean Smith will be desperate to get some more points on the board as his side attempts to consolidate their place in the Premier League table.
Aston Villa have made a good start to life back in the top flight of English football, and Smith's men have picked up 11 points from their opening ten matches and sit three points above the relegation zone.
Source : 90min