Rio Ferdinand feels that Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag has a masterplan to get a ‘reaction’ from Jadon Sancho after the pair’s public fall-out.
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Sancho claims he has been made a ‘scapegoat’ by Ten Hag after being axed from the squad which lost at Arsenal on Sunday.
His comments came after Ten Hag revealed publicly that Sancho had been omitted on account of his poor application in training.
While Ferdinand admits he has been left ‘surprised’ by their spat – he feels Ten Hag knows exactly what he is doing – and pointed towards how the Dutchman impressively handled issues surrounding Marcus Rashford and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Asked how he felt about Ten Hag’s public comments about Sancho, Ferdinand told TNT Sports: ‘The biggest thing for me is understanding why he said that.
‘What I can draw from it is that he gave him a couple months off last season, for personal reasons, to get himself fit.
‘He’s given him minutes, I think he started around 20 games last season, and he’s working out a way how he can trigger something from Jadon to get a positive reaction on the pitch.
‘He’s tried different ways and I think this is him trying to get a reaction out of his player. All managers do it differently.
‘I was surprised [by Sancho’s statement in response]. You don’t normally see players respond through statements publicly like that at all.
‘What’s the way back for Sancho? There’s going to have to be a conversation between the manager and player.
‘They’ve both spoken publicly, and if one of them doesn’t like it or not, they’ve both done it. And now it’s about what’s the best thing for Manchester United.
‘They need to decide that and have an open and honest conversation around a table and get through it.
‘I think Ten Hag wants to get Sancho performing for Manchester United. He’ll hope the reaction comes from that statement, and so do I.
‘Ten Hag has been ruthless in his decision-making before. You look at the different scenarios he’s faced such as Marcus Rashford being late to a meeting.
‘He called it out, made him a substitute and got a reaction. The Cristiano Ronaldo situation, he dealt with it, and the team got to where he wanted them to.
‘He achieved that. He’s dealt with these big situations head-on and hopefully there is a positive outcome from this.’
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