Manchester United have a £76.5m dilemma on their hands in Jadon Sancho that clearly needs solving.
The sensational Englishman hasn’t lived up to his exploits in the Bundesliga but there’s no real worry he won’t turn around his fortunes.
In fairness to Sancho, he’s arrived at a horribly unstable time in regards to United’s own troubles and so not much could have been expected from him.
Some of the club’s more experienced or settled players have been just as poor or haven’t looked as good as they normally would.
Moving on, there were a lot of problems Sancho was meant to solve for the Red Devils and so getting him back to his best has to be a priority, not just for his sake but for the club’s too.
Here’s how Manchester United can help him improve:
Play in one position, preferably
Sancho needs to settle and it doesn’t help if he’s used in various roles at this point of his career.
Yes he’s incredibly versatile and that can and should be a big advantage but it’s one that should only be exploited when he’s more confident.
United brought him in as a right-winger so he should be used in that position and preferably only in that position for the near future.
Mason Greenwood has tended to play in that role but it could be argued it’s not to his advantage, with fans wanting to see him play as a striker more.
Encourage sports psychologist sessions
Ralf Rangnick brought in some of his own staff with him to the Red Devils and one of those was a sports psychologist, Sascha Lense.
The German boss insisted at the time it was an absolutely logical decision to make and fans certainly agreed.
If Sancho isn’t already speaking to Lense then he should be encouraged to do so as he’s dealing with a lot of pressure at the moment.
Not only is the young winger adapting to a new league and bigger expectations, but his price tag will weigh heavy on his mind.
Sancho needs to get used to the Premier League but he also needs to get used to the mental toughness needed to shine on this stressful stage.
Take him out of the limelight
Having said that, pressure can be relieved by taking Sancho out of the limelight; let fans or rivals almost forget about his existence.
There are enough reputable stars at Manchester United who can shoulder the pressures of the club instead, use them in big-game moments.
Sancho should be protected, used as a substitute that is introduced in low-pressure situations such as when a game is already won or not much is on the line.
Unfortunately that type of scenario tends to be a luxury but Rangnick is experienced enough to know when. Just ask Marcus Rashford.
Rashford benefitted from taking a rest and being used as a substitute instead and now he looks ready for action again.
Support Sancho with lots of movement
It’s no good to throw him into the deep end on the right-wing with little to no support.
Sancho won’t be confident enough to take on multiple players and be a regular source of attacking for his teammates.
It’s important to ensure he’s surrounded by players who support him and provide him with options so he doesn’t have to doubt his decision-making or become overwhelmed.
Sancho simply cannot be the single creative burden in the team and others must stand up to take that pressure off him.
Rangnick’s 4-3-3 should see more creativity come from his midfielders, with Bruno Fernandes already getting better himself.
With the return of Paul Pogba, hopefully Sancho will have even better support and can feel more at ease.
Diogo Dalot’s rise at right-back will help the former Borussia Dortmund man more too as his overlapping runs will provide his teammate with exactly what he needs to shine once again.
Manchester United fans need to continue to remain patient but more can be done to protect Sancho in order to provide him with the platform to perform.
When a player lacks confidence or is out of form it can help to keep things simple rather than complicate matters.
An out-of-form player might get desperate, thinking he needs to take on ten players and score a hat-trick and grab a handful of assists or else he’ll be dropped again and never get another chance to prove his worth.
Sancho has to be given time and to keep things simple. Play the easy pass, show for the ball, use your teammates.
When he gains confidence from doing the simple things, he’ll remember who he is again and then he can remind the world of that too.