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Jadon Sancho Exiled from Manchester United's First Team amid Disciplinary Issues

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag wants an apology following remarks Sancho made on X, formerly Twitter.

By Andrew Woodin
Close up of Jadon Sancho running on the field

In the wake of Manchester United’s Jadon Sancho claiming on social media that he’s been “made a scapegoat for a long time,” the club has sidelined him from participating in the first team as manager Erik ten Hag reportedly is demanding that his star winger apologize for his remarks.

The 23-year-old English forward has since deleted his controversial tweet, but the rift with his manager is apparently still very real.

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What happened to Jadon Sancho?

Sancho was forced to step away from practicing with Man United’s first team after failing to meet manager Ten Hag’s demand of an apology, according to The Guardian, The need for the England national team forward to atone comes on the heels of Sancho denouncing Ten Hag’s depiction of why the winger was not featured in the 20-player squad in the Red Devils’ 3-1 loss to Arsenal on September 3 before the international break. Ten Hag revealed after the loss that his speedster had not trained well enough to travel to Emirates Stadium in north London.

“You have to reach a level every day at Manchester United, and we can make choices in the front line,” Ten Hag stated, according to The Guardian. “So for this game he was not selected.”

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What did Jadon Sancho post to X, formerly Twitter, that angered Ten Hag?

Sancho immediately pushed back on Ten Hag’s claim about how he'd been performing in training, posting a tweet that he has since removed from X. “Please don’t believe everything you read!,” wrote Sancho in the tweet, according to Sky Sports. “I will not allow people saying things that [are] completely untrue. I have conducted myself in training very well this week. I believe there are other reasons for this matter that I won’t get into, I have been a scapegoat for a long time which isn’t fair!”

“All I want to do is play football with a smile on my face and contribute to my team,” Sancho added in his since-deleted tweet. “I respect all decisions that are made by the coaching staff, I play with fantastic players and [I’m] grateful to do so which I know every week is a challenge. I will continue to fight for this badge no matter what!”

What has Erik ten Hag said about the Jadon Sancho situation?

With Man United backing Erik ten Hag —  stating that, from Marcus Rashford to Cristiano Ronaldo, Ten Hag has been indiscriminate in applying disciple when rules or standards weren't met, according to Sky Sports — the boss has drawn a line in the sand and shows no sign of backing down.

“Strict lines is the point, is what the club asked me because there was no good culture before last season so to set some good standards, that is what I did,” Ten Hag said, according to The Guardian. “That is my job, to control the standards.”

Ten Hag shed additional light into what’s happening behind closed doors at Old Trafford, hinting that this isn’t the first bump in the road for Sancho.

“It has never been when someone makes one mistake,” added Ten Hag. “It is a whole process before you come to a certain outcome about strict lines. If staff, players or whoever, if there is a structure to cross lines, you have to be strong, absolutely.”

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How much was Jadon Sancho’s transfer fee to Manchester United?

Modeling his game after Ronaldinho, Sancho blossomed into a viable weapon at Borussia Dortmund, where he became the wunderkind of the Bundesliga. At the age of 18, he became the youngest Englishman to ever score in the fabled German league, according to Goal.

After gobbling up accolade after accolade in Germany, Sancho made a big-money move to Man United in July 2021, who shelled out a $93 million transfer fee for his talents.

While he’s rarely risen to the caliber of player he was at Dortmund — Ten Hag has even given him a previous three months off to deal with what the Dutch boss said were “physical but also mental issues” — his contract is that of a high-profile Premier League player. According to Spotrac, Sancho signed a five-year deal with the Red Devils, valued at 91 million pounds (about $112 million), including an annual average salary of 18.2 million pounds (about $22.5 million).

Equipped with both technical ability and creativity, Sancho’s lightning-fast speed opens up a lot of chances for the Red Devils. His absence from the pitch, along with Antony’s, who’s been placed on paid leave from the club amid assault allegations, means Man United could be vulnerable on the flank when they face Brighton on Saturday.

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