Football News

Borussia Dortmund assist-machine Jadon Sancho backed to become “one of the best in the world”

By J Smith

Jadon Sancho in action for Borussia Dortmund in the DFB Pokal first round

Published: 16:53, 5 September 2019

Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho is all set to become “one of the best in the world”, according to teammate Paco Alcacer.

The 19-year-old topped the Bundesliga assist charts last season, setting up 14 goals for his teammates while adding a further 12 for himself.

Sancho to be “one of the best”? Five key things to know…

  • Sancho provided a league-high 14 Bundesliga assists last season.
  • He also scored 12 goals of his own.
  • This season, the Englishman already has two goals and a league-high three assists.
  • Teammate Alcacer believes Sancho is set to become “one of the best in the world”.
  • Sancho has six caps for England and is set to line-up up against Bulgaria this week.

His form since making his debut for Dortmund has seen Sancho drafted into Gareth Southgate’s England squad, for whom he has picked up six caps so far.

And the winger already has two goals and a league-high three assists in the German top flight this season so far, with Alcacer claiming Sancho is just “a few more attributes” away from joining the footballing elite.

“He’s still a ‘kid, he’s 19, has all the right characteristics, and if he doesn’t suffer a dip, he’ll be a top player,” Alcacer said.

“There are doubts because of his age, but as a player and a person in the dressing room, there’s no faulting him. If he keeps improving and acquires a few more attributes, he’ll be one of the best in the world.”

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Sancho has been named in Southgate’s Three Lions squad to take on Bulgaria and Kosovo in Euro 2020 qualifying during the international break.

Sancho has shown just “one tenth of what’s to come”

Alcacer isn’t the only one championing Sancho’s world-class potential, with the Dortmund man’s former youth coach at Watford, Louis Lancaster, insisting the teenager has only shown “one tenth of what’s to come”.

“I think he’s going to continue to surprise people,” Lancaster told Sky Sports.

“His game is so fast-paced, it’s very direct. When a player gets the ball, they’ve got a soft option, get the stats up, make the simple pass, or you can make it 75 per cent of the time but everything’s forward. What you’re seeing from Jadon is a 19-year-old boy with a lot of maturity.”

He added: “I’m extremely proud of what he’s doing, but I don’t even think you’ve seen one tenth of what’s to come. He’s going to keep pushing and pushing and pushing.

“When he was a kid in training, if we had 14 players, I don’t like to go 7 vs 7 just because it looks beautiful. I’d say to him, we’re going to go 9 vs 5 instead, and he’d say put me on the five because he wants to be challenged.

“You’re talking about a young boy, willing to move away from his family for sport. That takes a lot of guts. You can measure him on his dribbles, his goals, but how much courage does that take? How much courage does he have? It takes a lot.

“That’s someone who has a dream and will do anything to get there. Steve Redgrave, Usain Bolt, it’s like an iceberg – you only see the top, not the stuff going on underneath how they got there. That’s him.”