It has been a slow start for Jadon Sancho at Manchester United but England manager Gareth Southgate wants to help the winger continue to develop.
Expectations were high when he put pen to paper this summer. Fans were made wait a year for his signing and the England youngster had already established himself as a big hitter in the Bundesliga.
Manchester United paid a hefty fee for Sancho and over time we’re sure he will settle and become a star at Old Trafford. Right now, in my honest opinion, I think his game has been too safe. Maybe he needs a goal or assist to lift some of the pressure.
Sancho recorded 49 goals and 60 assists over the past three seasons in Germany, but has yet to hit the ground running in a United shirt. The arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo has shifted some of the focus away from the former Man City youth player while he settles back into English football.
Southgate has still named him in his latest England squad for their upcoming 2022 World Cup qualifiers against Hungary and Andorra. The Three Lions are already breezing past their group and it wouldn’t surprise me to see Sancho get some minutes in both games.
— England (@England) September 30, 2021
However, the England boss admitted he probably doesn’t deserve a call up based on current form.
“Does he deserve to be in on these performances over the last few weeks? Well probably not,” Southgate said, as quoted by the Independent. “But I think we feel we have invested in Jadon over a period of time, we believe he can get to a high level.
“I would like some time with him to to chat with him and help that process that’s going on at Manchester United as well and I think for him to feel that we have belief in him at this point is a good message.
“So again we’re talking about there’s no perfect solution here and you could easily throw another name at me that we’ve left out in the past and say, ‘well you didn’t deal with them in the same way’.
“We try to individually do the right thing at the right time, send the right message and sometimes the right message is to leave a player out and maybe they respond and that’s the right thing but we feel with Jadon at this time it is important for us to keep him with us.”
On top of this, Southgate says he isn’t surprised that Sancho needs time to adapt to the Premier League.
“The Bundesliga is totally different, Dortmund is a big club but Manchester United is one of the biggest in the world.
“There’s some adaptation to that, there’s a definite adaptation to the league, you’re not going to get the goals and assists numbers anywhere near in our league, that you are in the Bundesliga.
“There are some very good teams but also it’s a good league for young players to develop him because there are some teams that aren’t at that level.
“Our league, every game is intense and tough and he’s probably just starting to realise that.”