- Forward forced to train on his own
- Questions asked of his fitness
- No return date pencilled in as yet
WHAT HAPPENED? The England international winger was dropped from the Red Devils’ first-team plans during the World Cup break, forcing him to sit out a training camp in Spain as he worked on his fitness away from the main group. Sancho has returned to Carrington since then, but has not taken in a competitive appearance for United since October 22 after seeing his general fitness and conditioning called into question.
WHAT THEY SAID: Quizzed again on when Sancho will be welcomed back into the United fold, Ten Hag has told reporters: “I would like him back as soon as possible, but I can’t force this process. I have to show patience, although I don’t have patience because, you are right, we have a lack of options in the frontline. Jadon is one – when he is fit – who can contribute and then we have an extra option so we will have more chance of winning a lot of games. We have some hurdles still to take, but I think he’s in a good direction. I can’t force this process, so I don’t.”
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Sancho has struggled to produce his best on a consistent basis for United since completing a £75 million ($89m) transfer from Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2021 – with eight goals and four assists recorded through 52 appearances in all competitions.
IN THREE PHOTOS:
WHAT NEXT? United have found form as a collective of late, suffering just one defeat in their last 16 games, and will be hoping to see that momentum help them to make a positive start to their 2022-23 FA Cup campaign when playing host to Everton in the third round on Friday.