By 90Min
March 25, 2019

Jadon Sancho's rise from the reserve teams at Manchester City to becoming a household name across the world has been nothing short of extraordinary.

A lot was made about his decision to leave his home country as a 17-year-old in the Premier League, who appeared to be simply frustrated about his lack of first-team opportunities in England.

But Sancho's decision to take destiny into his own hands has been worth its weight in gold, and the Borussia Dortmund star now has the world at his feet as he enters his final year of being a teenager.

As Sancho celebrates his 19th birthday ahead of England's match with Montenegro, here's a look at some of the best career moments from Dortmund's number seven.


First Senior Goal

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Young players moving to a new league will often need time to bed into the first team set up, especially if they're moving to one of the biggest clubs on the planet.

But Sancho needed just nine appearances - five of which came from the bench - before he found the back of the net for the first time at the Westfalenstadion.

The former Manchester City star started to make international headlines when he curled a delicate shot past Bayer Leverkusen goalkeeper Ramazan Özcan inside the opening quarter of an hour to open his account not just for Borussia Dortmund, but also for his senior career.

Sancho wasn't finished there either, as he went on to claim two assists in Dortmund's 4-0 win against Heiko Herrlich's side, the first of which left teammate Marco Reus with his head in his hands in amazement before goalscorer Maxi Philipp had even finished off the move.


Winning the Under-17 World Cup

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Having lost in the Under-17 European Championships a few months earlier, England went into the World Cup in India as one of the tournament's clear favourites, but with an extra desire to go one step further than they had Croatia.

Sancho had an outstanding group stage run, scoring three of England's 11 goals as they booked their place in the knockout stages alongside Iraq and Mexico.

But it was there that Sancho's tournament ended, as Borussia Dortmund exercised their option to recall their new signing before the knockout stage of the competition so he could be part of their Champions League squad.

England edged past Japan via a penalty shoot-out, before cruising past the United States and Brazil to set up another clash with Spain - five months on from their defeat to La Roja at the European Championships.

Two goals from Sergio Gómez, who also joined Borussia Dortmund that summer, put Spain into the lead heading into half-time, although Rhian Brewster's header halved the arrears at the break.

Phil Foden inspired comeback then ensured that England's young lions would etch their names in the history books forever, registering a 5-2 win over Spain in the World Cup final.


Moving Ahead of Christian Pulisic

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Sancho had to wait until the back end of the 2017/18 season to score his first goal for Borussia Dortmund, but the Englishman was tipped for big things much earlier in the campaign.

In his second ever start for the club, Sancho was deployed on the left wing, while famed wonderkid Christian Pulisic was on the right in a tough away match against Hertha BSC.

But even before Sancho set up Shinji Kagawa to rescue a point in Berlin, it was clear for anyone watching that the then 17-year-old winger not only had a higher ceiling that Pulisic, but that he was already a more important player to the club than Dortmund's own Captain America.

Borussia Dortmund left the Olympiastadion with just one point to their name, but the game was somewhat of a turning point for Sancho on his journey to becoming one of the club's most influential players.


Bundesliga Player of the Month

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If we're being hypercritical, there's one thing which is standing in the way of Sancho being held in the same bracket as Kylian Mbappé - and one day Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo.


For all of his bursts of brilliance, Sancho has struggled at times to maintain his high standards over a long period of time, often going two or three games stunning fans in the Bundesliga before failing to click in the next batch of matches.


But the 19-year-old showed earlier this season that he could yet reach that level, going on to claim a goal or assists in every league match between September 26 and Halloween.


Sancho's four goals and four assists in five games earned him the Bundesliga's Player of the Month award for October, becoming the youngest player to even be nominated for the award, let alone to win it outright.


Senior England Call-Up

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It only seemed like a matter of time that Jadon Sancho would be getting a phone call from Gareth Southgate in the aftermath of the World Cup, as England looked to find that missing ingredient to help them go a step further the next time around.

The teenager's chance in the national team came in October, and it was then that fans who don't keep up with the Bundesliga on a regular basis got their first real look at this much talked about winger at Borussia Dortmund.

Sancho was shy in front of the cameras, but that didn't stop him being plastered all over terrestrial television for that fortnight, and in a behind closed doors match against Croatia the youngster was allowed to let his feet do the talking for the first time ever in an England shirt.


Sancho didn't feature against Spain a few days later, but the Dortmund star has remained part of Southgate's squad since and it's unlikely he'll be dropping out of the England set-up any time soon.


Scoring in the Revierderby

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Scoring the winning goal in a Bundesliga match is hardly something that will spring to mind as the pinochle of Jadon Sancho's career, especially as countless numbers of trophies and accolades still await for the England international.


But his strike in the Revierderby on matchday 14 earlier this season will undoubtedly live long in his memory.


Daniel Caligiuri cancelled out Thomas Delaney's early opener to have Schalke on course to snatch a point from their bitter rivals, but Sancho raced onto a through ball from Raphaël Guerreiro before slotting a shot past Ralf Fährmann - a carbon copy of his first senior goal.

For Borussia Dortmund, there is a lot of pride in calling yourself the Derbysieger, even if Schalke have had a fall from grace this season.

But for Sancho in particular, his match-winning goal in the derby was packed with even more emotion. He only returned to Germany the day before the Revierderby as he's spent that week back in England following the tragic passing of his grandmother.

"The goal means everything to my family. Sadly, my grandmother passed away, so that goal was for her," Sancho told Fox Sports (via ESPN) after their win at the Veltins-Arena.


A Pioneer for English Youngsters

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For everything Jadon Sancho has already done on the pitch during his short career, it's the precedent which he's set off it which is what has cemented his place as a player for the history books.


At 17, Sancho left Manchester City to move to a new country, making a clear statement and dispelling the misconception that the Premier League is at the centre of the world.


He walked way from the reigning champions and Pep Guardiola to get minutes, and Sancho's rise in such a short space of time has been unlike anything we've ever seen before at the highest level of the sport.


Sancho has given confidence to other players to demand spells outside of the Premier League, and it's the 19-year-old's approach to modern football which will benefit the players, their leagues and their country the most for years to come.

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