Jadon Sancho’s Man Utd shirt number options as No.7 unlikely to be handed to him

When Manchester United last spent a summer pursing Jadon Sancho, their iconic no. 7 shirt was vacant and seemingly waiting to be adorned by the talented winger.

However, fast forward a season and Edinson Cavani now boasts that number, leaving question marks over what squad number the 21-year-old would be given should he eventually put pen to paper on a deal at Old Trafford.

United appear more confident over striking a deal this summer given an array of factors leading to a drop in Sancho's price such as the financial impact felt by Borussia Dortmund as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and a drop in form from the player himself during an injury hit campaign.

As things stand, it looks most likely that Sancho will be entrusted with the no. 16 shirt, most famously worn by club legends Michael Carrick and Roy Keane.

16 is not the only number available to Sancho though, with no.12 the lowest vacant number; last worn by defender Chris Smalling before he departed United for Serie A outfit AS Roma.

The 15 shirt is technically currently occupied by Andreas Pereira, but Solksjaer is expected to bid farewell to the Brazilian international currently on loan at Lazio, in turn freeing up the number for Sancho.

Despite more recently being worn by flops Diogo Dalot and Sergio Romero, the no.20 shirt is one that has earned its palce in the United history books.

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Donned by both Robin van Persie and Sancho's potential new boss in Solksjaer, the winger could do far worse than the 20 jersey.

This is United's fourth attempt at securing Sancho's signature, having tried and failed in 2017, 2019 and 2020 respectively.

While both of United's most recent bids have met similar fate and been turned down, the Red Devils hierarchy are reportedly not phased and it is simply a case of 'when, not if' Sancho becomes a United player.

If United had succeeded in their efforts to sign Sancho last summer, he would have almost certainly been allowed to don the no.7 shirt originally left vacant by flop signing Alexis Sanchez, who had departed for Inter Milan.

Ultimately, a deal failed to materialise and United opted to hand the honour of the iconic jersey to new striker Cavani, who enjoyed a stellar debut season at Old Trafford.

Solskjaer has previously revealed how Cavani had the confidence to ask for the number, previously worn by the likes of George Best, Eric Cantona and David Beckham.

"That was the first thing he asked me when I spoke to him, if he could wear the No 7,” said the United boss in December.

"Obviously we are talking about the history of the shirt. When you think of the history of his career and the experience he has had, his personality from the chat I had with him and when I watched him before, it wasn't in doubt that he could handle the No 7 shirt."

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