Make room for England's Jack in the box: Neil Humphreys
Unleash Grealish and wake up England's attack
Watching the Three Lions is often a tedious experience, second only to England followers complaining about the tedious experience.
And then Jack Grealish comes along to reinforce all of the above and remind us that there is something inexplicably miserable about the English circus.
Grealish brings joy. He makes the occasion fun. His attacking game can be unpredictable, certainly, but the promise of something completely different is the reason we fell in love with the infuriating game in the first place.
In any other international set-up, his intoxicating competitive full debut against Belgium yesterday morning (Singapore time) would have bought his place in the first XI for the foreseeable future.
His name must go first for Thursday morning's dead rubber against Iceland in the pointless tournament known as the Nations League.
But this is England. And Grealish must carry the weight of his Englishness like a joyless ball and chain. To borrow the vernacular of these depressing times, the Aston Villa star is still very much considered a luxury item.
And England are currently closed to non-essentials. Only the essential brands are guaranteed a place in Gareth Southgate's cautious 3-4-3 formation.
Sometimes, it's hard not to conclude that had Lionel Messi been born in Accrington instead of Argentina, English curmudgeons would lament the genius' inability to fit into Southgate's system, which is like complaining that a Ferrari lacks cup holders.
Grealish isn't Messi, or Zinedine Zidane or even Paul Gascoigne - the 25-year-old has been compared to the last two in recent days - but he is a refreshing alternative to the underwhelming blandness of most England games.
Yes, they made the semi-finals of World Cup 2018, via an obstacle-free route, and there's always talk of a diverse, youthful attack ahead of major tournaments.
But, as those tournaments creep closer, that inevitable English conservatism takes over and Southgate packs the defence and flicks the setting to "dull".
Grealish is the obvious antidote, a cheeky remedy to the worryingly one-paced nature of England's recent performances.
He grew in stature against Belgium, turning a full debut against the world's highest-ranked nation into a giddy futsal exhibition. In the opening 20 minutes, he was the most fouled player - and that was only when the Belgians got within the same postcode.
One lovely turn left Thomas Meunier looking like a retiree chasing a paper bag on a windy day. It was all work and all play for England's new jack in the box.
A hooked ball cleared Belgium's midfield and found Declan Rice. A nippy dash slipped three defenders. An incise pass somehow took out an entire backline and found Harry Kane (a feat that eluded other England players for 90 minutes).
Grealish was all forward momentum. Like a teenage Michael Owen or a galloping Gazza, the Villa winger's natural instincts are to stride beyond his marker, every time.
He either beat the man or drew the foul - seven of them in fact. Grealish can be criticised for going to ground too easily. But he didn't steal fouls. He earned them.
His game was often one step beyond the Belgians.
So he's got to start against Iceland, surely, and enjoy a run in the side to establish himself before Euro 2020, a privilege handed to Gascoigne before Italia '90.
But there's a tactical conundrum. Southgate's 3-4-3 usually accommodates only one left-sided attacker, either Marcus Rashford or Raheem Sterling.
Both are quick, but whether they are superior in terms of raw talent is certainly a debate worth having in the coming months.
Being England's token "flair player", Grealish may be expected to conform to cliche at any moment and drift out of crucial games determined by the finest of margins.
But Grealish operates in those margins, providing moments of sublime spontaneity that are frankly beyond most of his teammates.
Southgate's defensive concerns are undoubtedly valid, but since his switch to a 3-4-3, England have spluttered.
Just one point from six against Denmark, a lucky win against the Belgians and a couple of victories against half-baked sides in Wales and Ireland failed to mask that stubborn cultural flaw.
The Three Lions seldom sparkle. They rarely excite. And they conformed to type whenever Grealish wasn't on the ball.
But, when he seized possession and danced past the Belgians, the contest ignited. England found a pulse. They need him. And so do we.
This year hasn't provided many reasons to get bums off seats. But Grealish might just be one of them.