The CEO of Borussia Dortmund has given his take on the struggles of Jadon Sancho to make an impact in the first few weeks of his Manchester United career.
Dortmund developed Sancho into a top talent during a four-year spell between 2017 and 2021. After Manchester City couldn’t provide him with a pathway to first-team football, the move to Germany worked wonders for him. Subsequently, Man Utd pursued him for more than a year before finally getting their man in July.
After failing to meet Dortmund’s asking price in 2020, the two clubs finally found a compromise. Consequently, there was much excitement for Sancho to finally get going in the Premier League. However, he is yet to meet those expectations.
So far, Sancho has made five appearances in the Premier League, only two of which were starts. He also made an additional start in the Champions League. But he is yet to provide a goal or assist in either competition since his transfer.
It should only be a matter of time before the 21-year-old comes good. But the subsequent return of Cristiano Ronaldo will only complicate his situation. One pundit has even suggested Sancho could follow a similar fate to Donny van de Beek at Old Trafford.
While it is too early to draw such conclusions, it’s fair to say more would have been expected of Sancho even at this early stage.
With that in mind, his former superior at Dortmund, CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke, has revealed his hurt at the fact that Sancho does not yet have the same role of prominence in England as he does in Germany.
Watzke told Sport1: “I love Jadon. When you see him playing you get tears in your eyes.
“It hurts my soul that he is given so little consideration. I think his problem is that he’s not set in the English national team.”
Incidentally, a lack of opportunities with England – he only started one game at Euro 2020 despite the Three Lions reaching the final – was one of the reasons he made the transfer back to his native country this summer, according to Watzke.
Sancho has 22 caps to his name so far but only half of those appearances have been starts. His primary focus at this point though will be on reigniting his club career in his new surroundings.
Solskjaer sees bright Sancho future
“I think you’re right, both with Raphael Varane and Cristiano coming in, that takes a little bit of pressure off a young man,” Solskjaer told Sky Sports.
“He’s 21, he’s learning the game. He’s learning how we train, he’s learning how we play, he’s learning the Premier League. But he’s come in hungry to learn.
“We knew his talent, and we signed him with the thought that we are going to have a top forward here for the next 10 or 12 years.
“Jadon’s finding his feet. It’s unfortunate that he fell ill just when he was going to come in, so he was out, and he lost a bit of pre-season. But he is working hard and he will be good.”