How Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could line Man Utd up with Jadon Sancho

Sancho will become a United player later this month

Sancho will become a United player later this month (Picture: Getty Images)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will finally be able to call upon Jadon Sancho next season after Manchester United agreed a £73million deal to snap up the winger from Borussia Dortmund.

The move brings an end to the drawn-out transfer saga, which dates back to United’s initial interest in the 21-year-old around two years ago.

Sancho was keen on sealing his move to Old Trafford last summer, but United refused to meet Dortmund’s £108million price tag for their star winger.

Solskjaer will finally have Sancho within his ranks for next season

Solskjaer will finally have Sancho within his ranks for next season (Picture: Getty Images)

However, that valuation was lowered, which has allowed the Red Devils to swoop in and finally get their man.

The deal is expected to be rubber-stamped after he returns from England duty at Euro 2020, where he is set to make his first start of the tournament in Saturday’s quarter-final clash against Ukraine.

After a slow start to last season following the collapse of his move to United, Sancho found his feet and ended the campaign in sparkling form.

The winger registered 16 goals and 20 assists across all competitions last term, breaking records in the process.

In February, he became the first and youngest player in Bundesliga history to reach 50 assists in less than 100 games, proving United have a special talent on their hands.

Solskjaer has excelled in getting the best out of his young players at United so far, and will need to repeat that trick with Sancho.

As the Norwegian boss looks to close the gap on champions Manchester City, here is how he could line United up with his brand new signing:

Goalkeeper and defence

De Gea and Henderson will continue their battle to be No.1 (Picture: Getty Images)

Solskjaer has a huge decision to make on who starts the new season as his No.1, with Dean Henderson and David de Gea both vying to be first choice.

De Gea, 30, has occupied the position for the best part of a decade but had his place threatened by 24-year-old Henderson last season.

Henderson finally got his chance when De Gea was granted leave following the birth of his first child, and impressed between the sticks.

But the Spaniard was deployed for May’s Europa League final defeat to Villarreal, in which he failed to save a single penalty as United fell at the final hurdle in the shootout.

It appears that United could be making space for Henderson or De Gea to leave after they signed a fourth goalkeeper, their former stopper Heaton, earlier this week.

Given his colleague’s disastrous Europa League display, Henderson could well be given the nod for the new campaign.

In defence, Solskjaer is likely to line up with a similar backline to last season, with potentially one new sparkling addition in the form of prime transfer target Raphael Varane.

Solskjaer is on the lookout for a new centre-back partner for Harry Maguire, and after wrapping up the move for Sancho, United appear to be close to finalising a deal for Real Madrid star Varane.

The French World Cup winner’s contract at the Bernabeu expires in a year’s time and no agreement over a new deal has been reached, meaning United could swoop in and sign him for a cut-price fee of around £45m.

If that deal doesn’t go through, Solskjaer would likely call on Victor Lindelof again, with Luke Shaw and Aaron Wan-Bissaka shoe-ins at full-back.


Pogba dazzled at Euro 2020 but may struggle to start regularly at United

Pogba sparkled at Euro 2020 but may struggle to start regularly at United (Picture: Getty Images)

The benefits of fielding Paul Pogba in a midfield three were once again laid bare as the 28-year-old dazzled for France this summer.

Pogba was stating his case to win the Player of the Tournament award until world champions France were knocked out of the competition at the last-16 stages, losing a penalty shootout to Switzerland.

But at club level, the midfielder has struggled to recapture the brilliant form he has shown for his country and at previous club Juventus, while his future is also uncertain with his contract due to expire next year.

He isn’t suited to playing in a midfield pivot, which could be why Solskjaer so often chose to deploy a partnership of Fred and Scott McTominay last term.

Solskjaer may choose to throw in last summer’s signing Donny van de Beek, but given how little action he got last term, that seems unlikely.

Further forward in midfield, there is only one man for the job: Bruno Fernandes.

The Portugal international has become a talismanic figure for the club since coming in last January, registering an incredible total of 40 goals and 25 assists in just 80 games across all competitions.


Sancho can take the Premier League by storm (Picture: Getty Images)

Sancho should slot straight in at right wing, although he is more than capable of playing on the other flank if required.

The England international will be a menace to Premier League defences with his speed, trickery and agility, let alone his goalscoring threat.

Sancho bagged 50 goals and 64 assists in 137 games for Dortmund, and while he may take some time in adjusting to the Premier League, he is primed for stardom.

Marcus Rashford will, barring injury, retain his place on the left after enjoying yet another solid season, while Edinson Cavani should continue to get the nod up top after a fine debut campaign.

Cavani, 34, was brought in on a free transfer last summer and netted 17 times across all competitions as he established himself as a vital member of Solskjaer’s side.

Anthony Martial, meanwhile, has fallen down the pecking order for one of the three forward positions and could see his playing time limited next term.

Manchester United 4-2-3-1 lineup

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