Writing in his column for British tabloid The Sun, World Cup winning captain Matthäus has enthused about the 18-year-old forward, saying Sancho caught his eye from the first moment he saw him in an England U17 match.
“I wanted to know more about this wonderful guy I’d seen playing. I didn’t know him at all, or who he played for, just his surname,” the former Bayern Munich and Borussia Mönchengladbach midfielder admitted. “But from that moment I could see he was fantastic. I only needed to watch for 15 minutes to know that.”
Imagine Matthäus’ excitement then when Sancho signed for Dortmund from Manchester City on the back of being named player of the tournament at the 2017 UEFA European Under-17 Championship where the Bundesliga legend first spotted him.
The former Ballon d’Or winner has now been able to watch the English teenager at close quarters over the last two seasons in the Bundesliga. “He’s a natural footballer. A player who has everything: fantastic speed, great technique, a good eye for his colleagues and that key pass. For me he is a perfect player,” the seven-time Bundesliga champion declared.
After a year of bedding in abroad, Sancho has started the 2018/19 season in electric form. His European-best six assists this Bundesliga campaign has seen him add to his list of international admirers, including England manager Gareth Southgate, who has called the 2017 FIFA U17 World Cup winner into the senior squad for the first time – even bypassing the nation’s U21s. Sancho could make his debut for the Three Lions in their UEFA Nations League matches against Croatia and Spain.