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Manchester United in preparation to finalise Jadon Sancho offer – reports

Manchester United are preparing to finalise agent salary and fees before submitting an official offer to Borussia Dortmund for Jadon Sancho, according to the Daily Mail. United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer still retains the England winger as his number one target this summer to bolster the attacking line of Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood. Over the past few weeks, talk of Sancho heading to Old Trafford this summer had quelled with his £108 million valuation still desired this summer.

Dortmund chief Michael Zorc last month suggested that United’s chances of signing the England winger has dissipated after the 10 August deadline to sign the player expired. The Daily Mail understands that United will make a move for the 20-year-old this summer but first of all they will sort out the salary and fees of intermediaries involved in the prospective deal before placing an official bid for the winger. Sancho’s agent is said to be Emeka Obasi of the Elite Project Group agency.

United have been the frontrunners to sign Sancho this summer with the Old Trafford club expected to be the only club that could spend this kind of transfer fee on a player this summer, despite suffering financially from the after effects of the coronavirus pandemic that stopped world football for around three months from mid-March. United have already signed Donny van de Beek from Ajax for £35.7 million this summer and are seeking to offload a number of players to make way for other arrivals this summer.

United have some work to do in order to create a team that can match the qualities of Liverpool and Manchester City to challenge for the Premier League title. The arrival of Van de Beek will go a long way to adding strength and depth in the midfield, also a capable player who can get into the box and create something for his teammates, which there is a lot of at the club right now, especially with the arrival of Bruno Fernandes during the January transfer window with 12 goals and eight assists in 22 appearances already in his short spell at the club.

Former United captain and Class of 92 graduate Gary Neville had urged the club to strengthen in five different areas this summer in order to help the club deal with the lives of Liverpool and City. Speaking to Sky Sports, Neville said:

“They have to sign a world-class centre back. For me, another midfield player.

“I also think a right winger, a centre forward and you have to look at left back because of Luke Shaw’s injuries and the fact he has obviously been in and out of the team in the last two or three years.

“So, I think there are definitely four or five players required and to not get three, I think it would be a problem because of what the other clubs are doing.”

Neville then talked about Chelsea strengthening this summer with Timo Werner, Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell and Thiago Silva all arriving during the summer transfer window, also talking about Liverpool and City, which will mean that United could be under further pressure to sign more players this summer. Neville said:

“If Liverpool get Thiago, if Manchester City do what they are looking like they are going to do and with Chelsea doing what they’ve done, they are your competitors and they all look like they are improving and moving forward.

“I’m not sat here as a United fan thinking I desperately want him [Sancho]. It could be any number of players that become available that would improve United.

“If Harry Kane became available, and Tottenham fans will be saying why are you trying to get him out of Spurs again, but if he became available, he’d obviously improve United’s squad. So it doesn’t have to be a certain player.”

Written by John Walker

Five wingers Manchester United could sign instead of Jadon Sancho this summer

Manchester United have been linked with Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho for well over a year now and that does not seem to be something that will end, even despite the Old Trafford club not adhering to the German clubs imposed deadline of the 10 August to sign the 20-year-old. It is still suggested that United want to sign the player this summer, but reports in the media are not making things easy at all. The club seem to be adamant that Sancho will remain at the club for the 2020/21 season.

Of course, that might be a ploy to get what the club wants, which is a minimum of £108 million for the player to leave the Bundesliga club this summer. However, that said, United need to think of other options that will still work, moving forward, otherwise they could be left with panic buy options which will not be best for the club and could see United in another Alexis Sanchez predicament at the club, which would mean that the club has not evolved or in fact learned anything from the past seven years.

Here are five other options that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could pursue to actually sign a winger this summer…

Kingsley Coman, 24, Bayern Munich

This Frenchman is probably the best of the five options in terms of bringing in the quality that United need this summer but also a difficult player to sign this summer, especially after Bayern Munich completed their treble, their second in seven years, by beating Paris Saint-Germain in the UEFA Champions League final on Sunday evening, lifting their sixth title. Bayern also won the Bundesliga and the DFB-Pokal this season. Coman has been linked to United this summer but it might not be viable now.

This season, Coman made a total of 38 appearances for Bayern, scoring eight goals and seven assists. The 24-year-old Frenchman can play on either the left-wing or the right wing, playing 20 times on the right for this club. If Sancho was the first choice for United to bring in this summer, Coman should be number two on the list. However, there would be a difficulty in signing the player. Bayern have signed Leroy Sane already this summer and could also sign Ivan Perisic, who is on loan from Inter Milan with an option to buy. Should this happen, Coman might not see himself playing regular football for his club.

Ousmane Dembele, 23, Barcelona

This Frenchman is a player who has been linked to United already but a player that Barcelona are not willing to sell this summer. The Catalan club paid €105 million for the player from Borussia Dortmund three years ago and after suffering a number if injuries, it was reported that the club would look to get rid of the player. This season, four injury spells have seen the player miss around 40 matches, which is not a great sign. However, there is a chance that his injury hell could be behind him now.

Dembele has made a total of nine apperances for Barcelona this season, scoring one goal and no assists. The player can play on the left-wing and the right-wing, playing five times on the right this season. Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has confirmed that Dembele will not be sold this summer, but if a club was interested enough to place a bid for him, would that change? Barcelona’s 8-2 defeat to Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League has led to a number of changes but some players seem to be untouchable this summer.

Jack Grealish, 24, Aston Villa

The Aston Villa captain is probably the more attainable player in this list so far despite the Birmingham club asking for around £80 million for the player this summer. United will not feel that he is worth that fee though and will need to put in the effort to get a deal done. It is suggested that Grealish would sign for United at the drop of a hat but that is yet to be seen. Before the player says anything, he would need to see a concrete plan for United to bring him to the Old Trafford club.

This season, Grealish made a total of 41 appearances for his club, scoring 10 goals and eight assists in a season which saw Villa avoid relegation on the final day of the season and reach the Carabao Cup final, in which they were beaten by Manchester City. Grealish is a player who will be considered a big fish in a small pond at Villa and would become a small fish in a big pond at United with some suggesting that he would be better placed staying put. That said, the player would learn more being able to play European football, which he will get at United more than at Villa.

Douglas Costa, 29, Juventus

I personally feel that the Brazilian would be a mistake at United. It was suggested that United were interested in signing him last summer with a bid of £54 million suggested, despite nothing seemingly happening and now United could be interested again, although this is newspaper talk rather than anyone of not suggesting that United are in fact interested. The player will be 30 soon and in the twilight of his career. He would want a relatively high wage ad with United suffering after signing Alexis Sanchez, the warning signs are there.

During the 2019/20 season, despite Costa making a total of 29 appearances, he scored just three goals, assisting seven more, which is not the sign of a player that would regain his form at United and be the player that they are missing in the squad. I could be wrong but I can only give my personal opinion on this. United could do much better and because of that, should seek to find much better. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to sign young and hungry players to get the club back on the trail of success, Costa is not young but he might be hungry for success – that might not be enough.

David Brooks, 23, Bournemouth

The Bournemouth winger might be the wild card in the pack here but United have held interest in the player for a while now. Formerly of Manchester City’s academy, Brooks left the club for Sheffield United, which is where he was seen by Bournemouth and signed in the summer of 2018 for £11.5 million. His career has not been the greatest though. In the 2018/19 season, he started off well making 33 appearances for his club, scoring seven goals and five assists. However, an ankle injury that season kept him out for five matches.

Brooks required surgery on his ankle at the end of the season, this kept him out of action for almost a full year. If it was not for the coronavirus pandemic, Brooks would not have played any football during the 2019/20 season. That said though, returning to fitness after the lockdown, Brooks made nine appearances scoring one goal and no assists, playing on the right-wing. The media has suggested that Brooks could be an option if United do not sign Sancho. However, I feel the 23-year-old could become a squad player at United, which might lead to more.

Written by John Walker

Manchester United to give up on Jadon Sancho until next summer – but will they?

Manchester United are reportedly ready to pull the plug on their pursuit of Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho this summer, aiming to launch a bid for the player in a year’s time instead, according to reports by The Sun. United would need to pay £108 million up front to sign Sancho this summer with the German club not willing to accept payments in instalments, which has been reported many times already this summer and given that the 10 August deadline elapsed a fortnight ago, the club has no reason to sell now.

The report has stated that United intend to call time on their chase of the England winger, possibly returning next summer, which could be difficult seeing as other clubs such as Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Barcelona etc might actually make a move for the winger. It is suggested that the player’s representatives want to secure a contract worth £300,000 per week for Sancho which is something United do not want to just into based on the fact that the transfer of Alexis Sanchez was such a bad move for United.

This seems to be just another lame excuse dreamt up by the media as Sancho will ask for a large weekly wage moving to a bigger club, especially one of the richest clubs in the world. What would make United think that the player would ask for less money in a year’s time? When you want to attract the best players in the world but not pay them what they want, where do you expect the club to end up? Certainly not with players who are considered the best at what they do, being underpaid at United.

Every summer, there seems to be a lot of speculation, much of which could well be dreamt up by football writers in the bid to generate clicks to websites in order to make money, which is not really something that many will be a fan of. Surely, journalism should be better than that, searching through all the lies to find the truth, reporting on facts, not fallacy. But modern football has brought lots of money, which has left the media seeming to make money too, which is why there seems to be so many different stories, some of which contradict even the same sports writers.

The Mail has also claimed that United will let the Sancho deal lie this summer, attempting to sign the player next summer. Instead, it is suggested that the club is willing to spend £27 million on Juventus winger Douglas Costa, which was stated to be just £18 million a few days ago. Thinking about that one, why would a club that understands that Dortmund will be wanting more than £100 million for Sancho, whether it is this summer or next, waste money on a short-term option who would want big wages himself and might not be so easy to shift next summer?

Sancho recently admitted to SportBible, as reported by The Sun, that the transfer speculation can be hard to ignore and the player wants to get his head down and focus on his Dortmund career, which is what he would say, being a Dortmund player, right?

“It would be easy to get carried away. It can affect players. For me it’s about not looking at those things and just focusing on trying to do the best I can on the pitch… especially in training.

“For me it’s about improving every single day. “It’s important for me to keep a smile on my face and keep happy. I don’t really look at all the noise and all that stuff. I’d rather keep my head down, keep focus and improve every day.”

Written by John Walker

Jadon Sancho refuses to rule out transfer whilst club suggests he’s staying put – oh the drama!

Manchester United and the transfer window are two things to equate to drama. Each time the transfer window opens, there is major speculation and United tend to leave things late, which is not the sign of a club that has a clue what it is actually doing. This is an important summer for United but with nothing seemingly happening yet and supporters getting annoyed, it is going to be a long summer transfer window. United have been heavily linked to Jadon Sancho this summer, but the 10 August deadline that the Old Trafford club were set by Borussia Dortmund expired with nothing much happening.

Ever since that date and the fact that Sancho left Germany for Switzerland on the club pre-season training camp, the German club has reiterated that Sancho will be staying at the club for the entire 2020/21 season. Whether that happens remains to be seen though. Sancho has refused to rule out a transfer this summer, which leads something hanging in the balance, despite the player stating that he tends to not think too much about the speculation, which suggests that he had a good head on his shoulders.

United will need to spend £108 million (€120 million) on Sancho this summer, which in a post-coronavirus financial market could be a big ask, unless the Old Trafford club were able to agree on a lump sum up front then the rest paid in instalments, which might be beneficial for the Germany club in the future. Seldom do you see many transfers that put these sums of money up front with a player then joining a club, there always seems to be instalments. Sancho recently spoke to SoccerBible about the speculation surrounding him this summer, with him saying:

“It would be easy to get carried away with [the transfer speculation]. It can affect players. For me it’s about not looking at those things and just focusing on trying to do the best I can on the pitch… especially in training.

“For me it’s about improving every single day. It’s important for me to keep a smile on my face and keep happy. I don’t really look at all the noise and all that stuff. I’d rather keep my head down, keep focus and improve every day.”

The English winger seem to have a level head, which is a good sign for him during the future as if he remains at Borussia Dortmund for another season, the likes of Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Barcelona, as well as United might be seeking to sign him next summer. Earlier on Saturday, Sancho played in the first of two warm up matches, scoring in the 5-1 victory over MSV Duisburg. Dortmund seem to be adamant that Sancho will stay at the club this summer, seemingly refusing to accept instalments from United, pushing for the entire fee upfront. Director Sebastian Kehl being quoted by Goal as saying:

“Jadon [Sancho] is happy to stay. He has a contract until 2023. I see him on the pitch and he is very happy. Everyone is very happy to have him. He is going to be here for at least one more season.”

United supporters may think that it would be the end of the world if United did not sign Sancho. However, everything happens for a reason. Whilst that reason this time would be the Glazers and Ed Woodward, United will still live on. United need to rebuild and the quality in the current squad needs to be raised. When the first XI are playing, things can work well but when you add fatigue, things do not go all that well, as was visible at the end of the season with United running out go puff. Former United striker, Andy Cole feels that Sancho’s prospective arrival could hamper Mason Greenwood’s progress at the club, which is an exciting future right there after the 18-year-old scored 17 goals and five assists in 49 appearances. Cole told the PA news agency, reported by The Sun:

“It’s scary and long may it continue. He can play as a nine and he can play out wide of a three, so it will be interesting to see where United think his best position is and what they see him as.

“If you have a player like Mason Greenwood then you can’t afford to block their progress. For me, the best number nine in the world is Robert Lewandowski. But there aren’t many, if any, Lewandowskis about.

“And if they do bring in Sancho then you’ve got to be careful as you don’t want to block [Greenwood’s] progress. United do need to bring in players as you must improve every season but it’s a fine balance.”

Written by John Walker

Lucien Favre states that it’s important Jadon Sancho stays at Borussia Dortmund

Borussia Dortmund manager Lucien Favre has talked about the importance of Jadon Sancho remaining at the Bundesliga club this summer. The 20-year-old has been linked to Manchester United for well over a year now with suggestions last summer that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s club would make a move for the former Manchester City academy player. The coronavirus pandemic seems to have caused financial damage which might actually limit United’s financial might this summer.

United were given a deadline of the 10 August to sign Sancho with a €120 million fee payable for the English winger this summer. United chose to let he deadline pass, considering they were still participating in the UEFA Europa League at the time with Sancho leaving with his teammates for a pre-season training camp in Switzerland. Since then, the German club has stated that they plan to keep Sancho at the club for the 2020/21 season, which seems to be a wish rather than a confirmation.

Favre, speaking to Der Westen and reported by The Sun, said:

“It is important that he stays with us. That is of course also important for the team.

“Sancho is of course a very good player but he must also have in mind that he still has a lot to learn.

“He needs to have better control of the ball, to do more headed flick-ons and to improve his defending.

“He can’t just stop running and stand still for 10 minutes and then suddenly do something for the next 10 minutes. This applies to everyone else as well.”

We all know that Sancho is an important player for Dortmund and that they would like to retain the player this summer, but in the years to come, is he going to be worth £100 million and more? That is something that they might not be able to guarantee. The player could have a shocking 2020/21 season and his value to fall considerably. That is what happens in football. Favre might already know this, hence the comments that he is still a player learning the game, which could even be reverse psychology.

There seems to be something said by someone at Dortmund nearly every day with the manager, the sporting director, the CEO and teammates of Sancho. If the club was really confident of the player not leaving this summer, why the constant commenting in the media? It just seems strange. Surely, if the club made the decision to keep the player, the statement from the club should be enough to do that, surely? The Borussia Dortmund supporters seem to be quick to insult and abuse United supporters whenever they mention anything about Sancho but that seems to be fear.

If United want to sign Sancho this summer, they will need to pay £108 million for the player. On Monday, it was reported that Solskjaer would need to sell some of his fringe players at the club in order to raise the cash and clear the wage bill to add another play who would become a high earner. United really need to add quality to the squad this season as the first XI are good but the lack of quality depth is the problem moving forward. The Glazers must be able to see that getting the best available players will go a long way to helping United return to the promised land, which will make more money for the club in the long run.

Written by John Walker

Manchester United warned about Jadon Sancho, told not to leave it late with Dortmund not needing to sell

Manchester United have been warned about signing Jadon Sancho by former United coach Steve McClaren who said the 20-year-old is not the player United should have prioritised. He reckons that the player United should have signed Erling Haaland who is a player that would have fit into the squad. United were strongly linked to the 20-year-old in January but he signed for Borussia Dortmund from RB Salzburg instead and he has risen to become a player that will have a lot of interest going forward.

United will need to spend £108 million to sign his teammate Sancho this summer with United already missing the 10 August deadline to sign the player, seemingly still remaining confident of a possible deal to sign the player despite the Bundesliga club stating that they plan on having the player at the club for the 2020/21 season. McClaren told talkSPORT that he believes United have many players similar to Sancho at the club already and that Haaland would have been the more logical signing. He said:

“The front four are so quick, they’re so exciting and they cause so many problems, and Martial is a fantastic player, but in the big games when it really matters he never looks like a true goalscorer.

“They need class in that position. I don’t think [Romelu] Lukaku fit into what Manchester United are all about, that high intensity, and I think they need that.

“The manager is helpless if the club don’t back him and go for the likes of Haaland. What a perfect fit he would have been. I’ve seen him for Dortmund and he’s an incredible player at 20.

“Imagine him in the Man United team, that would be spot on. So they’re not far away, but they have to spend the money and get the right players.”

Speaking about Sancho, the former United coach spoke about the Dortmund player not being a number nine, which is a position that United would go a long way in signing and that the England winger is similar to Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford, and Mason Greenwood and he wondered if United really needed another player in the same mould as the trio. He might have a point but Greenwood could thrive playing centrally with Sancho on the right and Martial on the left, Rashford playing a different role. McClaren concluded by saying:

“I’ve seen Jadon Sancho play a lot for Dortmund and he’s very, very exciting, but he’s a little bit like Martial, [Marcus] Rashford and [Mason] Greenwood and I wonder, do they really need that?

“He’s not a No 9, and Martial, Rashford and Greenwood aren’t that either. You’ve got to get a fox in the box, a goalscorer and No 9 and they’ve got to find one quick.

“Yes, Sancho would improve the squad, but to win big games and to win cups, you need a No 9 and you need two damn good centre-backs. Haaland would have been perfect; a young talented striker, a No 9 who can play under pressure – they’re difficult to find.”

United have also been warned not to chase Sancho for the entire summer transfer window. Back in 2013, United could have signed Marouane Fellaini for £23.5 million at the start of the window but ended up paying £4 million more on deadline day, chasing Cesc Fabregas and others in a summer that David Moyes and Ed Woodward failed the club. The Sun has reported that United cannot afford to wait and should get their number one target signed as soon as they are able to. You can learn a lot from history and United could learn by looking back at theirs, which is recent.

In another report by The Sun, it is stated that Dortmund do not need to sell Sancho this summer, which could be another opportunity for the club to try and hurry United into completing the deal for the winger this summer. Of course, it could be the German clubs way of telling the club that their chance could have come and gone to get the transfer completed. United were told to pay £108 million for the winger and had until the 10 August to sign him and ever since, the club has continued to make noises suggesting that the player will remain at the club and they do not need to sell. It seems so public to be true. I guess we will have to wait and see what the end game will be.

Written by John Walker

Borussia Dortmund defiant that Jadon Sancho is staying; United put off other transfer business to seal deal

Manchester United seem to have been thrown yet another transfer warning regarding Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund days after the deadline to sign the player for €120 million expired. On Monday, Sancho headed to Switzerland with his teammates for their pre-season training camp and the club had previously said that if the player went with the club, he would be kept for the 2020/21 season. It would seem that the Bundesliga selling club will stick to their guns, or will they?

United seem to have spent a lot of time chasing Sancho in 2020 making the player the clubs number one target of the summer. However, after missing the 10 August deadline, it could well be an uphill task to get a deal done with Dortmund adamant that they will be keeping the player, even if they did say that they planned to keep the player for the 2020/21 season. Dortmund legend Sebastian Kehl, who now works for the club spoke to German magazine Kicker, which was reported by The Sun, saying:

“It was important to clarify this subject. Of course, we are aware of Jadon’s appeal [in the market] but we also know how important he is for our team.

“He is a player who can make the difference in every game. He had an outstanding past year with 17 goals and 17 assists [in the Bundesliga].

“He gives the team something extra and we are very happy that he is staying, as his team-mates have already stated in recent days.”

It would seem that United have made things difficult this summer and may have to look elsewhere for a player like Sancho, which is probably not going to happen. However, in another report by The Sun, it has been stated that United have put all other summer transfer business on hold as they aim to sign Sancho. But with all due respect, they were given a timeline to sign the player and never met it, seemingly briefing the media that they intended to try and sign the player for less money later in the window.

It is suggested in the report that the first contract offer for Sancho would have seen him take a pay cut, which is not what some newspapers reported with the player said to have been offered up to £340,000 per week at United, which seems hard to believe. The 20-year-old continue to be linked to the Old Trafford club, despite Dortmund’s stance on the matter. Whether the club means they will retain him this summer or not is yet to be found out. It is possible that the player hands in a transfer request but that would see him leave the club in a similar situation as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, which might not be wanted.

It has been suggested by The Mirror that United want to sign Sancho so badly that they could decide to forgo all other transfer targets this summer to get him, which would not be ideal with the depth of the squad not looking all that good in terms of quality. How could a club like United have so little money to bring in new players when they have ben earning massive amount of money for decades. The answer to that question is the Glazers. Granted, they have made money available in the past for it to be wasted, and spending a little bit more this summer, to sign Sancho would see them heading in the right direction. The club needs to sort themselves out, they are knows an penny pinchers and that needs to stop.

Written by John Walker

Jadon Sancho under pressure to publicly commit to Borussia Dortmund – reports

Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho is reportedly under increasing pressure to publicly commit himself to the Bundesliga after the 10 August deadline for Manchester United to purchase the player for €120 million expired without anything solid happening. Whilst United will still be after signing the player, it would seem that the club is not as committed to selling the player, especially after putting it so abruptly on Monday after the player flew to Switzerland with his teammates.

Neil Custis of The Sun has suggested that Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc and some of Sancho’s teammates have suggested that the 20-year-old will be staying at the club for the 2020/21 season, the player himself has remained silent, which gives an, albeit slight, impression that the player would like to leave the club. Dortmund have Sancho contracted until the summer of 2023 so it seems rather strange that the player would need to make a public commitment to his club. Surely him signing his last contract does that?

On Wednesday, as part of the pre-season training camp, Sancho played in a training game against SC Rheindorf Altach, winning 6-0. Whilst the player has not yet committed himself to his club and whether he would do that remains to be seen but the silence could actually mean something. I don’t think a club could make a player commit in public, that would seem a bit extreme and could but the German club in a position whereby it causes itself some negative publicity. It just seems strange right now.

Journalist Daniel Harris has suggested that Sancho will put in a transfer request in order to get the move to United this summer but personally, I cannot see that happening just yet, especially not whilst the squad are on their pre-season training camp in Switzerland. After playing his first pre-season match on Wednesday, Sancho did speak to the media but said nothing about wanting to commit to the club, just that he loves playing with this lot, which is what you would expect a player to say about his teammates. The Sun reported Sancho as saying:

“I love playing with this lot. It is a special bunch. We’ve got some special young players coming up.

“I am really happy to share the pitch with them and guide them. I was once in their shoes, playing with the seniors. I am happy for them.”

There has been too much stated to suggest that United would just let this move turn into nothing. Surely, as the club knew that the transfer window was coming up, you would have thought that United would have opened discussions with Dortmund months ago to test the water and see what was required to get the deal across the line. It is stated by Custis that there are agents and intermediaries continuing to wrangle over the English winger’s future so this looks set to rumble on for many more weeks. It is not enjoyable seeing every transfer turned into a war of words, which it feels this one is becoming.

Written by John Walker

Ed Woodward has a plan for Jadon Sancho and it might well burst into flames

Manchester United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward seemingly has a plan to sign Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund this summer but instead of playing ball with the German club and getting the deal done before their deadline of the 10 August, which was the day the club travelled to their pre-season training camp in Switzerland, United seemingly let that run down, perhaps having a cunning plan ahead of the clubs summer transfer business.

Journalist Jan Aage Fjortoft seems to think that United might still sign Sancho despite the club sounding defiant in their statement on Monday which confirmed that the club ‘planned’ to have Sancho for the 2020/21 season. Although, to me that did not sound all that convincing. When you use the word plan, it hardly seems defiant. Surely if you were 100% sure that a player was no longer going to be sold, the word plan would not have been used to describe that. That is just me thinking about words used, which might have helped form my opinion of it.

However, Fjortoft seems to think that this could still have something to it. United, at the moment would need to pay £108 million for the English winger, which is a lot of money to be spending during the current financial climate which seems to have been ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic and will continue to affect clubs as long as supporters are kept out of stadiums. The German club’s defiance might be something that United are playing with but the Norwegian journalist feels that a deal could still be done.

There is no putting this nicely but Dortmund are a selling club. They buy players for small fees, not all the time in the case of Erving Haaland, but end up selling them for inflated fees based on their development. I am not ridiculing what the German club do but you cannot suggest they do not do it. Over the years they have sold some great players who they took a chance with. Robert Lewandowski will be the only player that that does not apply to as he left the club as a free agent. Fjortoft, speaking to ESPN and reported by The Mirror, said:

“I think the problem for Dortmund is going into the summer they hoped there was going to be a lot of bidders. The price tag of €120million was given to him when they thought there would be more clubs in for him. Now there is only Manchester United.

“Manchester United need that kind of player and to get the hottest property in this transfer window will make them look very good. Believe me, this Zorc statement, they feel like they want to keep the player.

“Like I have said many times, Sancho has got to confirm this. There is a great dialogue between the player and the club. I get the feeling this will drag on for another couple of weeks.

“I believe Zorc with what he is saying. He is not lying. Zorc’s problem is that he said the same things about [Ousmane] Dembele and [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang and he got stick for that.

“The big problem today is that they gave him a better contract last summer and they extended that by one year. I would wait until they have a Jadon Sancho press conference where he says ‘I can’t wait to play another year with Dortmund’. Then I will believe Zorc.”

If what Fjortoft has said is right, it would seem that United have a chance to sign the player this summer. Of course, the German club will not turn down £108 million (€120 million) for the player – as long as they have the time to bring in a replacement. If United come in on the 5 October, which is the day the transfer window closes, the answer will be no. However, if they come in a lot earlier, say in a week or two, it might all be different for them. Dortmund are preparing for the new season and they will want to challenge Bayern Munch. They could do that with or without Sancho, United will need to make up their minds up as to whether they want him and what about they will pay for the player.

Written by John Walker

Manchester United dealt major blow in Jadon Sancho chase. Is there a game at play?

On Monday, it was confirmed that Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho left Germany with his teammates for a training camp in Switzerland ahead of the new Bundesliga season. United were seemingly given a deadline of the 10 August (today) to sign Sancho, which has obviously not happened. United now find themselves in a bit of a predicament. The German club has stated that the player will remain at the club, but it may not all be as it seems.

Back in July 2017, Ousmane Dembele was wanted by Barcelona and Dortmund’s sports director Michael Zorc stated that the player would not be going anywhere unless the Catalan club met their fee for the player. Dortmund wanted €100 million for Dembele that summer and in August 2017, Barcelona paid €105 million for the player with another €40 million in add-ons. Dortmund are a selling club and will always stick to their guns regarding the fee they want, as they end up getting it.

Zorc gave a press conference on the clubs arrival in the Swiss spa town of Bad Ragaz which is where the training camp will be taking place. The Sancho rumours were rife heading into today’s deadline and that was going to dominate in the media during and after this press conference with United seemingly on the receiving end of a club that knows what they want and intends to get it. Zorc, as quoted by the clubs official Twitter account, said:

“We plan on having Jadon Sancho in our team this season, the decision is final. I think that answers all our questions.

“Last summer we adjusted Jadon’s salary to match the development of his performances. So in context, we had already extended his contract until 2023 back then.”

Daniel Harris, a journalist for the Guardian has stated on Twitter that Sancho will put in a transfer request and forgo his percentage of the transfer fee. It is also said by Harris that United and Dortmund were close to a deal but Ed Woodward, United’s executive vice-chairman tried to ‘gazunder’ Dortmund which was not something they were going to let happen. It was stated that €60 million was being paid up front and €60 million would be part of the deal but the payment structure was not agreed so needed work.

If this is true, it makes you wonder what goes on in Woodward’s head. What is the point in agreeing something, then trying to go back on that agreement to save more money. That is not the way you do business, especially after making an agreement. It would seem that Sancho might have a lot of work to do in order to get this move, which will see whether he wants it or not. Of course, if a player tries to force through a move and it fails, that player will be alienated by the clubs supporters.

Sancho will need to take his time to see what he wants to do. There might well be a deal further down the line between the two clubs but United should be doing things that do not make enemies of clubs as they might need to negotiate again, whether buying or selling a player. United, if Woodward made an agreement, should have stuck by that. I guess it will be Woodward’s fault again if United end up missing out on their number one target of the summer. It would serve them right. However, looking at the way Dortmund seem to do business, there is a set play going on.

Written by John Walker

copyright: JW