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Sancho puts Manchester United career in doubt with Ten Hag spat

Jadon Sancho’s Manchester United future could be in doubt after he took a swipe at manager Erik ten Hag for saying he had been dropped because of poor training performances.

The 23-year-old, who described himself as a “scapegoat”, did not travel to London for Sunday’s Premier League match at Arsenal, which United lost 3-1.

The England winger was conspicuous by his absence, having come off the bench in United’s first three matches.

Ten Hag had few experienced attacking options at the Emirates, with debutant Rasmus Hojlund, Alejandro Garnacho and Facundo Pellistri among the substitutes.

The Red Devils appeared set for a 1-1 draw but conceded two stoppage-time goals to slump to a damaging defeat that left them 11th in the Premier League table.

Ten Hag said Sancho was dropped due to sub-par training.

“Jadon, on his performances in training, we did not select him,” the Dutchman said after the game.

“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.”

However, Sancho hit back later Sunday in a strongly worded social media post.

“Please don’t believe everything you read! I will not allow people saying things that is completely untrue, I have conducted myself in training very well this week,” he posted on X, formerly known as Twitter.

“I believe there are other reasons for this matter that I won’t go into, I’ve been a scapegoat for a long time which isn’t fair!” 

He added: “All I want to do is play football with a smile on my face and contribute to my team. I respect all decisions that are made by the coaching staff, I play with fantastic players and (am) grateful to do so which I know every week is a challenge. I will continue to fight for this badge no matter what!”

Sancho has struggled for consistent form since moving to Old Trafford from Borussia Dortmund for £73 million ($92 million) in 2021. 

He has scored 12 goals in 82 appearances in all competitions for United.

Sancho, a youth player with Manchester City, started Ten Hag’s first season brightly but did not feature from late October until February — he missed out on the World Cup and completed an individual winter fitness programme in the Netherlands.

He featured in the League Cup final win against Newcastle after returning and ended the 2022/23 campaign with seven goals and three assists.

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