Jadon Sancho “is STILL absent from Manchester United training” despite their imminent return to action in the Carabao Cup – a week after Erik ten Hag admitted the winger was not “physically or mentally ready to play”
Jadon Sancho is “still missing from Manchester United training” after Erik ten Hag said he was “not mentally ready” to return to action.
United face Burnley in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup on Wednesday night, but winger Sancho will not be available for selection due to concerns over his mental state.
Sancho switched off his social media accounts last month in a bid to be ready for the second half of the season, but that move only raised further concerns for his well-being.
Jadon Sancho ‘still missing from Manchester United training’ as Erik ten Hag’s side prepare to return to Carabao Cup fourth round action against Burnley
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag (right) has admitted he does not know when £73million Jadon Sancho (second right) will return to action for the club
Sancho, 22, has been undergoing an individual training program in the Netherlands on the recommendation of Ten Hag in recent weeks after failing to make England’s World Cup squad.
The aim was to restore Sancho to peak fitness, especially mentally, and try to rediscover the form he showed during a bright opening to the season.
Sancho did not travel to Spain with other United players who were not in the World Cup for a warm-weather training camp and friendlies against Cadiz and Real Betis.
And according to the Manchester Evening News, Sancho is still unable to return to full training at United’s Carrington headquarters. He has not been pictured in squad training since 31 October.
A short video emerged last month of Sancho dribbling around training dummies alone
Ten Hag have spoken to £73million Sancho about his situation on several occasions but have not put a time frame on his return to training.
– We want to bring him back as quickly as possible, but I cannot give any forecast as to when that will be, Ten Hag said earlier this month.
“Sometimes it’s a matter of fitness and mood. We had a drop in quality and sometimes you don’t know why or what’s causing it.
That’s what we’re doing now to try to get him back there. It’s a combination of physical and mental.’
Sancho has not played since October 22 due to illness and that has caused concern for the gifted Londoner, even more so after he shut down his social media accounts last month
Man United fixtures
Premier League unless stated
Wednesday Burnley (H)
Carabao Cup fourth round
December 27 Nottingham Forest (H)
December 31 Wolves (A)
January 3 Bournemouth (H)
January 6 Everton (H)
FA Cup third round
January 14 Manchester City (H)
Sancho has been training with a coach Ten Hag trusts at Dutch amateur club OJC Rosmalen, with a short video showing him dribbling around training dummies.
United would ideally have Sancho fit and available ahead of a hectic Christmas schedule.
He last played for them in a 1-1 draw at Chelsea on 22 October and was then sidelined due to illness.
After the Burnley game on Wednesday night, United host Nottingham Forest in their return to Premier League action on December 27 before traveling to Wolves on New Year’s Eve.
Ten Hag’s team follows it up with a home game against Bournemouth on 3 January and a tie in the third round of the FA Cup at home against Everton on 6 January.
It comes as the nine players in the squad eliminated in the quarter-finals return to the club in time for the clash with Championship leaders Burnley.
Harry Maguire, part of the England team knocked out by France in the last eight in Qatar, could feature on Wednesday because first-choice centre-backs Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez made it all the way to the finals with France and Argentina respectively.
Others who should be available are Luke Shaw, Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes, Casemiro, Fred and Antony, although Diogo Dalot is being assessed for a hamstring injury.