Jadon Sancho will miss Manchester United’s trip to Spain this week and their friendlies against Cadiz and Real Betis in order to continue working on an individual training programme.
The United winger has spent some time recently training in the Netherlands with coaches recommended by manager Erik ten Hag after being left out of England’s World Cup squad.
Sancho has endured a difficult first half of the season blighted by illness, injury and poor form and was dispatched to the Netherlands last month by Ten Hag where he had private training sessions at the Dutch amateur club OJC Rosmalen after Gareth Southgate decided not to take him to Qatar.
Now Ten Hag has opted to omit Sancho from his 29-man travelling squad for the winter training camp in Spain so the player can continue to work alone with coaches in the hope of getting back up to speed after a testing period. United – who flew to Spain on Saturday night and began training on Sunday morning – are due to play Cadiz on Wednesday and Betis three days later.
“Jadon Sancho is continuing his individual training programme as part of a process to get back to his highest level,” United said in a statement on their website. “The club is fully supporting him in this.”
After an encouraging pre-season under Ten Hag and goals against Liverpool and Leicester in the Premier League early in the campaign, Sancho’s form began to tail off before he was dropped.
An unused substitute against Sheriff Tiraspol and West Ham in late October, Sancho then missed United’s final four matches entirely before the break for the World Cup with his absence put down to an unspecified illness.
With 13 of United’s players having been involved in the World Cup, in addition to Alex Telles who is on loan at Sevilla, Ten Hag will take a mostly youthful squad to Spain for some warm weather training and the two friendlies ahead of their domestic return to action against Burnley in the EFL Cup on December 21.
Full backs Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Brandon Williams, both of whom have been absent for much of the season with injury problems, have been included in the squad. Goalkeeper David De Gea, centre half Victor Lindelof, midfielders Scott McTominay and Donny van de Beek and forwards Anthony Martial, Alejandro Garnacho and Anthony Elanga are also travelling.
Axel Tuanzebe will stay behind in Manchester as he continues his rehabilitation from serious injury but there was no mention by United of forgotten man Phil Jones, who is not in the travelling squad and has not featured at all this term in his enduring battle with injury.