Manchester United News: Jadon Sancho, Marcus Rashford, Juan Mata

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It’s the off-season for all club competition, almost all of the international play currently being staged are just meaningless friendlies, so you know what that means? It is indeed the summer silly season, i.e. time to talk some more unorthodox topics. So with that in mind, let’s dive right in to the latest narratives surrounding Manchester United.

We begin with the quartet of players in contention to represent the national team at November’s World Cup in Qatar. Turns out, only one United player in the squad for the Nations League contest against Hungary tomorrow. That would be central defender Harry Maguire, so ironically, we’re talking about the player with the poorest form of all this past season.

Left back Luke Shaw is out injured while Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho are out of favor due to a drop in form. England’s loss on penalties to Italy in the Euro 2020 final last summer has left both Red Devils forwards with a lot to prove, according to Three Lions manager Gareth Southgate. However, there are still opportunities, next season, for the pair of forwards to show their class and quality, and thus earn their way back in.

Southgate was asked at a presser today if United’s players could be fresher than players on other teams, next season, given how they won’t be playing Champions League football. His answer:

“We’ve only got one with us. They’ve got a lot to do to get back in the squad.

gareth southgate

“I think the lower the load then of course the less likely for injuries and the hope that players can be that little bit sharper but there’s no way of knowing. Some players are at their best when they’re in a rhythm of playing.”

Rashford, who struggled with injury, and missed a lot of time, scored just four goals in league play last season. Much has been made about all that he does off-the-pitch, and many think that had been distracting him from his game. While it might be best for him to move on to another club this summer, he will be staying home/put.

As for Sancho, he started extremely slow, and had major issues adjusting from the Bundesliga/Borussia Dortmund, and accomplished just three scoring strikes. He did pick it up in the second half of the season though.

The duo missed United’s final three matches of the season. Elsewhere, we knew Juan Mata was leaving the club this summer, but we didn’t know the epic fashion in which he would do so. Have you not seen his goodbye video yet? This is only a clip, not the whole thing, but you’ll get the idea.

ICYMI! Wow, just wow!

For his final interview as a member of United, go here.

Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”

He has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune, and he co-hosts the After Extra Time podcast, part of Edge of the Crowd NetworkFollow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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