Jadon Sancho has earned his first call-up to the England national team following an incredible season with Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga. The youngster rose through the ranks at Watford before transferring to Manchester City and only last year switched loyalties to move to Dortmund. All these have happened in a space of five years and, watching him play, one would be forgiven for thinking he was further along in his career.
This is a youngster who has shown great commitment by doing what most fledgling players would rather not do: move abroad at a very young age. His risk is paying off and the call-up to the national team set-up is a testament to that.
We will try and understand why Gareth Southgate decided to give him his first call-up with an objective view of what kind of player we are talking about.
No player has provided more assists across Europe’s top leagues than Sancho, whose record stands at six in just 215 minutes of Bundesliga action and one made in the Champions League.
He is still a very young lad whose other aspects of the game will need to improve but he has already scored one goal this season. His passing accuracy is currently at 86.7 percent which is an impressive figure for a youngster who is only 18 years old.
Last but not least is that he is a flair player who can operate in a number of forward positions with the quality to get past defenders and score goals. All these attributes, tampered with the ability to deliver at key moments, make him such an outstanding player.
What does the future hold?
Sancho is maturing as a top professional, but to do that he has had to make a lot of critical decisions in the past. Moving to Borussia Dortmund is one such key decision that he had to settle on when it dawned on him that first team opportunities at Manchester City were going to be limited. That decision has paid off and that is why he is considered one of the top young prospects across Europe today.
His current contract does not contain a buyout clause, but Manchester City have an option to re-sign their former player. He will need more time to settle as a regular in a big club, something he must have gotten used to during his days at City. With more game time, he will gain the confidence to affect games on a regular basis, something that will go a long way in developing him as a player.