When it was reported this week, initially by Bild, that Manchester United have made their first official offer for Jadon Sancho, others quickly joined in.
The claims were backed up around Europe, with one notable exception.
Ruhr Nachrichten weren’t saying anything, which seemed odd. That matters because RN is Borussia Dortmund’s local newspaper and reliable. They don’t generally don’t jump headfirst into transfer waters, and have very good connections at BVB.
If you want to know what’s going on at the club on a daily basis, then Ruhr Nachrichten would be the first port of call.
Well, Friday sees them get involved, and their headline isn’t exactly positive: ‘Manchester United vies for BVB star Sancho: same game, same mistakes?’
They start off by praising the player for his return to form as last season grew older, and they even say his desire for a transfer isn’t all about the huge wages he’d receive at Manchester United: He wants to ‘go back home’.
Ruhr Nachrichten completely ignore claims from Germany and focus on England, saying Manchester United leaked to English journalists that they’d made an offer worth €78m, however, according to RN sources… ‘this offer did not land in Dortmund’.
Manchester United leaking it to Bild is very unlikely (unless they’ve taken their leaking game to a whole new level), and even if all the other non-English reports copied from the German newspaper, the original report came from somewhere.
That said, whether there’s an offer and how official it is or isn’t probably isn’t the key factor here, because the amount wouldn’t be enough anyway.
The conditions of a transfer this summer are said to have been clearly communicated, presumably via Sancho’s representatives, and those conditions will form the ‘framework’ of any deal, with only ‘details’ negotiable.
There’s an understanding from RN that Manchester United want to ‘save every Euro’ possible, yet it’s stated Dortmund have already reduced their previous asking price (which was €120m) by €25m and ‘there will definitely not be more discounts’.
Indeed, they expect to earn more with bonuses added on.
RN believe Sancho will want a deal agreed as soon as possible so it doesn’t become a distraction, but they end their article by saying: ‘That is not all that likely to happen’
Manchester United will likely have to go to a figure around €90m, and perhaps even add some bonuses, fanciful or not, on top of that.