Borussia Dortmund have confirmed the signing of Manchester City winger Jadon Sancho.
The 17-year-old was linked with Premier League rivals Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur, but opted to move overseas to continue his development.
“We are very pleased Jadon Sancho, who is one of the greatest talents in European football, will definitely play at BVB. We are convinced we can help this very young player continue to develop his game and become a real asset for our team,” said Dortmund sports director Michael Zorc.
He will wear the number 7 shirt, made vacant after Ousmane Dembele joined Barcelona. Dortmund’s deal to sign the City starlet includes significant add-ons and a sell-on clause, says the Guardian.
“It’s been an eventful two-and-a-half-years with many special moments. It was a difficult decision but the time is right for a new challenge where I can fulfil my potential,” Sancho said on Twitter.
“I want to thank everyone at Manchester City FC; the coaches and staff that have contributed to my development, my teammates and of course the awesome Manchester City fans who have always supported me. I move with great memories.”
Sancho was voted Player of the Tournament at the European U17 Championships with England, who finished runners-up, and reportedly turned down a contract worth £30k-per-week from City to make the switch to the Westfalenstadion.
The teenager had a rocky relationship with the Sky Blues in the weeks before his move, however, having failed to turn up for training on a number of occasions while being accused of going on strike by manager Pep Guardiola.
“We arrived at an agreement with Sancho, we shook our hands. We offered him a huge deal in terms of the salary. After he said ‘I am not going to sign the contract’, we said ‘OK, you are not going (on the pre-season tour). After that, he didn’t appear in the training sessions,” said the City boss to the Daily Mail.
The poor manner of his departure from Manchester City may raise questions about his attitude, but his ability has never been in doubt. The 17-year-old has been outstanding in the England youth teams , scoring seven goals in 11 games for the U17s and 16 goals in 18 appearances for the U17s.
Sancho bagged 12 goals and four assists in 14 games in the U19 Premier League last season, contributing 27 goals in 33 games in all competitions at club level.
It’s not hard to see why the likes of Manchester United, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Barcelona were also linked with the winger in the past, but now his focus is on Dortmund.