20-year-old thought he was ‘going to join’ Manchester United: report

Former Swansea City manager Paul Clement believes midfielder Renato Sanches thought he was joining one of Manchester United or Chelsea after leaving Bayern Munich on loan.

The 46-year-old coach, who was assistant manager at Real Madrid,  Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern, believes Sanches had bigger expectations that Swansea upon leaving the German giants.

“He wasn’t so keen initially. He thought he was going to go to Man United, Chelsea or Paris Saint-Germain. Bayern were saying, ‘You’re not going there, it would be the same situation, you’re not going to play’.” Clement said, reports the Daily Star.

Sanches has since struggled for form with Swansea, making only 12 league appearances in an injury-hit season. The 20-year-old has been on the winning team just once in 2017/18, and he’ll likely go down as a flop among supporters. Clement believes he can prove his worth, however, so long as he’s not playing under pressure.

“In training, when that pressure is not there, he was the best player. He could do things no one else could do. He’s got power, can go past people, got a shot on him. But then in games, I looked at the choices he was making, shooting from 45 yards on the angle, and he kept making those mistakes,” the ex-manager added.

Manchester United missed out on Sanches’ signature before the midfielder would go on to stay in the European Championships for Portugal. Bayern Munich beat them to the deal, a fortnight before Jose Mourinho was named manager, and who said he’d “fight for him” had he joined the club a week earlier.

The Red Devils might steer clear of the midfielder for the time being, given how much he’s struggled with Swansea. Sanches is still young enough to improve, however, but he’s got a long way to go.

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