Manchester United and England International Jadon Sancho has just deleted/archived all of his Instagram posts and blacked out his profile picture.
The 22-year-old has been going through a tough run of form recently, struggling to find rhythm in his game before missing the last two club games before the World Cup through illness.
Sancho started the season well, with goals in a pivotal 2-1 win vs Liverpool and a 1-0 away win vs Leicester. He also managed to score against Sheriff in the Europa League in mid-September. Since then though, he has only got one assist in all competitions, and has not looked like himself on the pitch.
The Sancho of old, who would take on players and take risks had become someone who took little to no risks in the final third, ultimately struggling to create chances for himself and his teammates.
It resulted in Gareth Southgate snubbing him from the England setup, something he has struggled to get into following the Euros last year, where he missed a penalty during the shootout in the final.
The Man City academy product had to deal with a lot of racial abuse following the penalty miss last summer, along with Marcus Rashford and Bukayo Saka.
Having not been selected since then, he has become somewhat of a laughing stock amongst football fans recently as he had been left out of Southgate's 26-man squad to travel to Qatar.
Jadon Sancho sneaking into Qatar as a matchday steward pic.twitter.com/BOXFTbBC1D— The Rondo (@TheRondoPod) November 10, 2022
Jadon Sancho sneaking into the England plane to Qatar.. pic.twitter.com/hUn5ZqGQ2H— Buch¡ TTW 🌎 (@_buchii) November 11, 2022
Prior to joining Manchester United, Sancho had 30 goal involvements in each of his last three seasons at Borussia Dortmund in all competitions. He was one of the most promising young players in the world, but joining an unstable project at United last season seems to have hindered his progress.
With the blacking out of his Instagram, it is clear that he is going through something, and the abuse and ridiculing online is surely not helping with his situation.
His drop in form was also seen with his drop in body language on the pitch. We saw something similar last season with Marcus Rashford, who recently came out and admitted he had been fighting some demons off the pitch, which effected him on the pitch.
Sancho posted something on his story before blacking out his Instagram, a quote from Blake Lively saying: "Family is at the root of everything that i do, and it's also at the root of everything that i create."
Manchester United fans have been quick to show support for their #25.
Jadon Sancho has had to deal with constant racist abuse and also deal with the death of a family member whilst adapting to a new league and playing under 4 different managers in the space of a year. Insane amount of psychological strain for a 22 year old. pic.twitter.com/2tbIM6KzP3— Vhiz™️ (@vhidalokaa_) November 19, 2022
Mental health is something that has started to be taken more seriously in football, as it is often forgotten that footballers are human too.