Lucien Favre Reaps Rewards for Starting Jadon Sancho as Key Period Begins for Borussia Dortmund


Jadon Sancho once again proved to be the difference for Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, grabbing his 14th league goal of the season to help his side overcome a spirited Freiburg side.

The Englishman now has 17 goals and 18 assists in all competitions this season. Simply remarkable - and what's more, it's still February. 

With each passing game and with seemingly every touch Sancho takes, his stock is continuing to rise. 

The rumours linking him with a whopping £100m+ move away from Germany in recent times continue to gather pace, but such is the youngster's talent and desire to reach the top, this hasn't affected his performances. Not in the slightest.

In fact, he has taken his game to new heights and is now proving himself on the ​biggest stage of them all

Dortmund boss Lucien Favre came into Saturday's clash with Freiburg knowing that his side are entering into a vital period in their season. After the weekend's win, ​BVB next travel to take on Borussia Mönchengladbach the following Saturday, who are currently just two points behind them in the league - but have a game in hand. 

They then take on Paris Saint-Germain in the second leg of their last 16 Champions League tie, with the Bundesliga outfit currently holding a slender 2-1 lead. Favre's men return to league action afterwards, where they will then face Schalke, Wolfsburg and ​Bayern Munich.

It's a crucial run of fixtures, perhaps a season-defining run of games. As a result, Favre hinted that he may rest some of his key players for the game against Freiburg.

Goal machine Erling Haaland, who had been suffering with a stomach bug during the week, began the game on the bench, but Sancho did start. And it took him just 15 minutes to make his mark. 

Julian Brandt and Thorgan Hazard linked up well on the left-hand side, carving through the Freiburg defence. Sancho saw the play developing and showed the intelligence and awareness to make a darting run towards goal. This run allowed him to arrive in the box at the perfect moment to latch onto the incoming cross. 

Yes, it may have been an open goal, but it was all about the sensational movement.

He may be one of the youngest members in the first-team squad, but he once again led by example. Intensity, work ethic and desire to make things happen, all of this, of course, mixed with a sensational ability on the ball. 

Perhaps the best thing about Sancho's performance was that he never stopped looking to make things happen, constantly probing and testing. One moment perfectly encapsulated his performance. In the 89th minute of the game, with players beginning to fatigue, Sancho looked to press the ball, forcing the defender into a mistake on the edge of his own box. 

And as Sancho dispossessed his opponent, he had already assessed his options, ultimately deciding to go for goal himself. The shot was eventually blocked, but the hunger he showed in the closing minutes of the game reaffirms why Favre was forced into selecting him, rather than resting him. 

It's not just the goals. It's not just the assists. It's his all-round performance. 

Sancho's ​strike proved to be the difference once more, and it means that Dortmund remain in the fight for the Bundesliga title. This kid is destined for the top. 

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