It was a surprise to see Manchester United’s bench against Arsenal not include Jadon Sancho and instead have the academy pair of Hannibal Mejbri and Dane Gore.
United ended up succumbing to yet another away defeat in the Premier League and it once again laid bare years of under-investment and poor recruitment during the Glazers regime.
While Arsenal brought on the likes of Gabriel Jesus and Fabio Vieira to claim victory, United lumped on Harry Maguire and Jonny Evans, highlighting the gulf in class on the benches of both teams.
After the game, Erik ten Hag was asked why the former Borussia Dortmund man was not included in the matchday squad and he said that the winger’s training performance did not merit a call-up.
Instead of taking the criticism on the chin like Marcus Rashford did last season, Sancho immediately put out a statement on social media accusing the manager of making him a scapegoat and that there were other reasons behind the snub.
The Daily Mail have claimed that the England international feels the manager provides preferential treatment to Antony, despite his inconsistent displays during the current season.
“Some close to the 23-year-old believe he hasn’t been getting a fair run at cementing a first-team place, pointing out that Antony is sometimes given preferential treatment despite struggling for consistency himself.”
Interestingly, United insiders have dismissed such claims pointing to the fact that last season, the manager gave Sancho time to heal both physically and mentally and provided him with all the support required.
“United insiders dismiss this theory though with a belief the Dutch boss feels Sancho can still give more.”
It is true that the Brazilian has not lit the stage on fire since his arrival but he is still new to English football and this is not the time to point fingers, especially considering Sancho’s own disappointing form.
It is obvious that the Dutchman would ask more from a player who has managed only 12 goals in 82 appearances since his £73 million move back in July 2021.
Sancho accuses ETH of providing Antony more chances
He looks like the shadow of the player United chased for over a season and seems so shorn of confidence that he avoids 50-50 battles and always looks timid on the ball.
United legend Rio Ferdinand had claimed that such insolence would not go down well with Ten Hag and the winger might be forced to warm the benches or might even be jettisoned off to Saudi Arabia.
This spat is the latest player feud Ten Hag is having to deal with during his tenure at Old Trafford and the pair are “expected to hold clear-the-air talks” this week.
The Peoples Person had even reported that United were willing to sanction his departure after holding swap deal talks with Chelsea, indicating all is definitely not well between the two.
Sancho has not been called up to the England squad and is expected to remain at Carrington.