Jadon Sancho to Al-Ettifaq: 'loan and option to buy', Man United stance, Erik ten Hag verdict ahead of Brighton

Brighton will travel to a Man United team after the international break with Erik ten Hag’s men in a slight state of disarray
Jadon Sancho and Manchester United are due to face Brighton on September 16Jadon Sancho and Manchester United are due to face Brighton on September 16
Jadon Sancho and Manchester United are due to face Brighton on September 16

Saudi Arabia club Al-Ettifaq launched a late bid to sign Man United attacker Jadon Sancho on loan.

Sancho is currently out-of-favour at United and was criticised by head coach Erik ten Hag last week following their 3-1 loss to Arsenal.

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The England international was omitted from the team as Ten Hag felt his performances in training were not up to scratch. Sancho fired back and publicly stated he has been made a scapegoat for United and that other players are favoured by ten Hag.

Sancho, 23, joined United for £72m in 2021 from Borussia Dortmund but importantly he was not a signing made by ten Hag. Antony – who was dropped from the Brazil squad this week after allegation made by his ex-girlfriend – was signed by the Dutch manager and has often been favoured in attacking areas.

Steven Gerrard’s Al-Ettifaq offered Sancho an escape route as they prepared a late loan bid and the Saudi team also wanted to include an option to buy. The option to buy would have been a tricky one to negotiate at this late stage as the Saudi transfer window closes tonight and it would perhaps have been too complex to agree in time. But it now appears the loan move is off altogether.

Athletic reporter David Ornstein posted: “Jadon Sancho isn’t joining Saudi Pro League before transfer deadline tonight. 23yo admired but move not happening. Same applies for Mohamed Salah but #SPL interest in 31yo remains for future + good relations between all parties.”

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It’s been a tough time for Sancho. His performances did not significantly improve after Ten Hag’s arrival last summer and he was consequently overlooked for England’s World Cup squad. Ten Hag went on to criticise his “fitness state” and revealed he spent time training away from the squad on an “individual programme”. Since then opportunities have been restricted by the form of Marcus Rashford and further competition from Antony and Alejandro Garnacho.

Last week Ten Hag said: “Jadon, on his performances in training we did not select him. You have to reach a level every day at Manchester United and we can make choices in the front line. So for this game he was not selected.”