Jadon Sancho finally returned to training with Manchester Unite’s first team on Tuesday, January 17, 2023 after spending several months on an individual training program.
Sancho, 22 years old, hasn’t played for United since he was substituted in the 1-1 draw at Chelsea on October 22.
The star returned to Carrington last week as part of his personal training plan which had been agreed with his club in November. Both United manager Erik ten Hag and Jadon thought it was better to have a reset from the day-to-day training environment at United’s Carrington training ground.
As Sancho’s team-mates represented their respective countries at the World Cup finals, the Londoner travelled to the Netherlands and undertook an individual training programme.
Sancho was not exiled or dropped from the squad, but United’s manager acted having seen that his form was dropping. Ten Hag has dropped several players this season and been vindicated on almost all his decisions.
“First we didn’t see him in the last games for United, so he wasn’t in the right status, in the right fitness state, so now he’so n an individual programme and we want him to finish that programme and hopefully, we see him back soon,” Ten Hag said while explaining the move at the beginning of December.
Asked why Sancho wasn’t on United’s wet weather Spanish training camp in December, Ten Hag said: “He’s not fit enough. Sometimes there are circumstances with fitness and mood. Now he’s on a physical programme and our aim is to get him back as quickly as possible.
“He was good (pre-season) but also when the league started he played some good games like Liverpool, Leicester and Arsenal,” said Ten Hag, noting that he’d scored against Liverpool and Leicester and set up a goal against Spurs.
“After we got a drop of level and what happens sometimes you don’t know why or what is causing it. That is what we’re doing now, trying to research and now we try to get him back there. It’s a combination of physical but also mentally.”
On the same trip, Ten Hag was also asked when he realised there was a problem with Sancho’s form.
“Most of the time it comes slowly,” he said. “On the tour he played really well, the start of the league he played really well, after the break his performance was lower. First you observe but then also the stats back it up and in the start of the season he had goals and assists and his key moments and key actions and it became less and less.”
In December, Ten Hag concluded his thoughts on Sancho by saying: “We want to bring him back as quickly as possible, but I can’t give a prognosis of when that will be.”