Jadon Sancho’s long-awaited transfer from Borussia Dortmund to Manchester United sees the winger return to a city he left four years ago.
Back in 2017, Sancho’s decision to turn down the offer of a contract with Manchester City to move to Germany raised plenty of eyebrows.
But after 50 goals, 64 assists and a DFB-Pokal trophy in four seasons with Dortmund no one is doubting his decision now.
United confirmed a £73million move for Sancho on Friday, with the 21-year-old signing a five-year contract with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.
Amid the excitement, Sancho’s previous spell with bitter rivals Man City was not on the minds of many, but City boss Pep Guardiola did offer his thoughts on the winger back in March.
“We wanted him to stay but he decided to leave, and when people decide to leave all we can do is [let them] leave,” he explained before City’s clash with Dortmund in the Champions League.
“I wish him all the best, except when he plays against us. No regrets at all. If he’s happy, I’m happy.”
Sancho is certainly happy, describing the move to Old Trafford as a “dream come true”, a year after United initially pressed Dortmund for his services.
While Guardiola was clearly sad to see Sancho depart City’s academy back in 2017, his transfer back to England does have a silver lining for the club.
City paid Sancho’s boyhood club Watford a fee of around £66,000 when he joined the club as a 14-year-old back in 2015 – a move which has proven to be a shrewd investment.
They received a transfer fee of £8m from Dortmund in 2017, but crucially also negotiated a 15 per cent sell-on clause with the German club.
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That means that around £10.95m of the £73m fee United have negotiated with Dortmund will actually end up in the bank account of their neighbours.
The money could be a useful boost for City, who are targeting two major signings this summer.
Guardiola’s side are desperate to find a replacement for Sergio Aguero, who joined Barcelona on a free transfer last month at the end of his contract.
Harry Kane is their number one target, but City have already seen a £100m bid rejected by Tottenham last month.
Spurs chairman Daniel Levy does not want to sell Kane, who has three years left on his contract – and especially not to a Premier League rival.
Meanwhile, City are also interested in Aston Villa Jack Grealish but are yet to make an official bid for the England playmaker.
With Sancho now settling in at United, the pressure has been increased on City to make a similarly eye-catching move in the transfer market.
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