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Erik Ten Hag unsure of Jadon Sancho’s Man United future

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By Martin Graham | 22nd Jan 2023

Jadon Sancho has been frozen out of the first team at Manchester United. The forward is back in training, with the first team suggesting an imminent return to action.

The former Borussia Dortmund forward has found the going rough at Manchester United, as he has struggled to replicate the form that saw the Red Devils fork out a massive amount for him. It is safe to say the young Englishman is yet to deliver the goods following his big-money transfer.

Manchester United have overcome an initial lethargy at the start of the season and is back in the top four. Their recent surge in form has brought them back into the title conversation again. A few weeks ago, one could not mention the Red Devils in the same sentence as winning the Premier League.

Times have changed. It is a testament to the solid work that Erik Ten Hag is doing at Old Trafford. While the Dutchman has solved the riddle of Cristiano Ronaldo by ensuring he left the club, the former Ajax manager is yet to find a solution to the problem Jadon Sancho poses. Sancho is currently on the sidelines, with a return date still unknown.

Sancho loses his place in the Red Devils’ starting eleven

Following a slow start to life back in the Premier League, Erik Ten Hag took a bold step to banish Sancho from the first team. The Dutchman wants to get the forward back in top shape and ready for the rigours of the Premier League. The English winger has struggled since his £73 million move to Old Trafford in 2021.

Sancho has suffered a severe dip in form. It is almost unprecedented in the history of the Premier League. It has seen the 22-year-old winger slip further down the pecking order with Ten Hag. Sancho has seen his place taken by a resurgent Marcus Rashford. Sancho now has a real fight on his hands, as he has to battle Rashford for a place in the team and big-money summer signing Antony.

Unable to claw back his way into the starting eleven, Sancho was given an extended run away from first-team action, with his last competitive appearance coming against Chelsea in the Premier League almost three months ago.

Ten Hag unsure of Sancho’s return date

Things may be looking up for Sancho, as the 22-year-old was spotted in training. The Daily Mail reports that the former Dortmund winger was training with the rest of the squad. The report has raised speculations of a return to action by the winger. Sancho could be back in contention to feature for the Old Trafford side, but Ten Hag is trying to temper down the optimism.

When asked about the availability of the winger, Ten Hag said he couldn’t answer the question. He told reporters on Friday (as quoted by BBC’s Simon Peach) that he was unsure when he would return to action.

Ten Hag said Sancho was taking steps towards returning to action and only started training with the first team on Tuesday. The former Ajax manager claims Sancho’s training regime will be upscaled in the coming days as they go step by step.

Man United takes on Arsenal on Sunday in a crucial Premier League tie at the Emirates stadium. The Red Devils secured a controversial first-leg victory over the Gunners.

Martin Graham is an MFF sports writer

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