Man United deny Jadon Sancho is set to return from his exile after fans thought Erik ten Hag said ‘Sancho’ and not ‘Sergio’ in his press conference when asked about fitness of left-back Reguilon
- Ten Hag was previewing Tuesday night’s Copenhagen Champions League game
- Many people thought he said Jadon Sancho was set to make a shock return
- Listen to the latest episode of Mail Sport’s podcast ‘It’s All Kicking Off!’
Erik ten Hag sparked confusion when Manchester United fans misheard him say ‘Sancho’ rather than ‘Sergio’ during his press conference on Monday.
The club had to clarify that the United boss meant left-back Sergio Reguilon was closing in on a return to first-team action after injury.
But Ten Hag’s pronunciation of his first name led many to believe he’d referred to exiled winger Sancho making a shock comeback.
Ten Hag was answering a question on team news ahead of Tuesday night’s Champions League game with Copenhagen.
Asked if he expected some players back, he said: ‘We hope. Sergio, he was fit, trained all week. Today he will train and then we have to assess if he is ready and game fit.’
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag sparked confusion when fans misheard him say ‘Sancho’ rather than ‘Sergio’ [Reguilon] when asked about returning players
Many thought Ten Hag said Sancho was set to make a shock return to the first-team squad
Instead, Ten Hag was referring to Sergio Reguilon, who is close to a return to action
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But many both in the room and at home thought Ten Hag said ‘Sancho’ instead of ‘Sergio’, prompting the reporter to ask a follow-up on what had changed with the winger’s situation.
Ten Hag answered that by saying: ‘We have to see if he is fit enough to be part of the squad for tomorrow.’
His answer sparked a flurry of excitement with several United fans – and even Sky Sports News – rushing to announce that Sancho was returning before deleting social media posts.
The club confirmed at the end of the press conference the manager was indeed referring to Reguilon, who has returned to training after a hamstring injury.
Sancho was banished to train with United’s academy teams at their Carrington training complex after the £73million England winger effectively branded Ten Hag a liar after being left out of the United squad to face Arsenal on September 3.
Ten Hag said Sancho was dropped because of his performances in training ahead of the fixture.
Sancho contradicted this in a social media post that claimed he was being treated as a ‘scapegoat’.
As Mail Sport revealed last week, Sancho has been training on his own at the club’s academy facilities since the beginning of October and is forbidden from mixing with his first-team colleagues.
There was a flurry of excitement on social media after fans thought Sancho was returning
Fans were quick to correct the record, saying that Ten Hag was referring to Reguilon instead
Sancho even has to lock the door when he changes in the academy due to safeguarding issues relating to any senior player mixing with minors.
It is understood that the player can come in from the cold if he says sorry to Ten Hag — but only if the apology is sincere.
So far Sancho has refused to give his manager the apology he wants, and is showing no signs of backing down despite the appeals from senior figures at the club and his own team-mates.
He has spent the last six-and-a-half weeks training on his own, and there is a growing feeling that even if he were to say sorry at this stage it would be an empty gesture and may still not be acceptable to Ten Hag.
If the matter remains unresolved, United will listen to offers for the England international in January, two-and-a-half years on from his big-money move from Borussia Dortmund.
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