In pictures: Man Utd v Aston Villa
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Borussia Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachin Watzke has criticised Manchester United for their treatment of Jadon Sancho in his first two months at Old Trafford. Sancho joined the Red Devils for a £77million fee back in July but has struggled to assert himself as a regular member of the side thus far.
The 21-year-old has only started two Premier League games for United this season and was left as an unused substitute for Saturday’s defeat at the hands of Aston Villa.
Sancho established himself as one of Europe’s finest talents during his time with Dortmund, scoring 50 goals and claiming 64 assists over the course of his four-year spell at the Westfalenstadion.
However, he has been unable to carry his formidable form into the Premier League as of yet.
The likes of Mason Greenwood and Paul Pogba have been preferred on the wings by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in recent weeks, while Marcus Rashford will provide further competition for places upon his impending return from a shoulder injury.
Watzke, who reluctantly allowed Sancho to join United earlier this year, has aimed a thinly-veiled dig at the Red Devils over their handling of the forward.
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The Dortmund chief told Sport1 that he is unhappy with Sancho’s lack of opportunities, suggesting that his status as a back-up player for England could be preventing him from starting on a weekly basis.
“I love Jadon, when you see him playing you get tears in your eyes,” said Watzke.
“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.”
United admired Sancho for a number of years prior to his arrival at Old Trafford, with club bosses mounting an unsuccessful attempt to secure his services last summer.
The Red Devils also tried to snap him up during his time as a prospect in Manchester City’s academy.
Solskjaer declared earlier this month that Sancho could soon begin to shine for United, with the club’s other recent high-profile signings able to ease the pressure on his young shoulders.
“I think you’re right, both with Raphael Varane and Cristiano coming in, that takes a little bit of pressure off a young man,” said the Norwegian boss.
“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.
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“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.”
Sancho could be set to return to United’s starting side in midweek when Villarreal make the trip to Old Trafford for their Champions League group stage clash on Wednesday evening.
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