Jadon Sancho has revealed his hero: Ronaldinho.
The Dortmund teenager has become the first player to be born this Millennium to be given an England call-up.Sancho is in Gareth Southgate’s squad for the forthcoming Uefa Nations League games with Croatia and Spain.
Sancho, 18, is one of the rising stars of the Bundesliga having moved from Manchester City for £8million in 2017.
Asked about his biggest inspiration, Sancho, 18, named the former Barcelona, PSG and Milan ace.
He said: “I used to look at Ronaldinho growing up. On YouTube. That was a big thing for me. I just liked how he used to carry his team and used to try things no one else would try. I liked him a lot.
“I’m a bit tricky, direct, confident obviously. I believe in myself in one-versus-one situations.”
Londoner Sancho admits it was a courageous decision to move to Germany where he has delivered nine assists for Dortmund in all competitions this season.
He said: “I believe in myself, so moving to Germany didn’t phase me.
“I moved away from home so young. It was taking one step further to move outside England. I can’t just go down the road and see my friends, but it’s what I want to do long-term. To be a professional footballer, you have to do what you have to do to make myself and my family happy.
“It’s nice. I’m happy to be a part of Dortmund. I have to say thank you to the manager for playing me, trusting me. It’s a noisy stadium. Again, 80,000 people… it’s not every day that you get to play in front of 80,000. I’m just grateful. Just happy.
“At first, I was nervous when I made my debut but now I’m getting used to it.
“I like it a lot. The culture is different. The fans have so much passion for the game and support me every week. It’s a dream come true, so I’m really grateful.”
Sancho received a phone call from Southgate who delivered the good news.
He said: ““I was at training when I first got the call, and straight away I told my parents. They were delighted for me, and I couldn’t stop smiling for the whole day.
“I was a bit surprised, to be fair. I’m so young and still have a lot to learn. I’m just grateful he’s seen my progress in the Bundesliga. I’m really thankful.”
“I was surprised, me being so young. I knew about Theo Walcott, who was 16… I’m just happy.
“It means a lot to me, especially my family.. I always dreamed of playing for my country when I was a young kid. It’s the biggest thing for me. My Dad was a big fan of John Barnes, growing up. He had a couple of videos of him, growing up. I’d watch them.”
Sancho was not keen when asked about leaving City. He said: “I don’t really want to talk about City at the moment, if that’s alright. I just want to talk about England
“The growth in England at the moment is crazy. There’s a lot of great young players out there. They’re so determined to play, and watching their idols play. The Champions League is the greatest stage, so I hope the young players reach their potential and enjoy it too.”
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