Borussia Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc has admitted Jadon Sancho is suffering from a dip in confidence which means he is lacking 'natural lightness' at the moment.
Sancho was the subject of considerable transfer speculation in the summer with Manchester United ultimately failing to convince Dortmund to sell.
The England international is expected to be one of the most sought after players in next summer's transfer window but so far this season he has been well short of his best.
Sancho was largely anonymous in Dortmund's 3-2 defeat to Bayern Munich on Saturday and remains without a goal in all competitions.
Last season Sancho bagged 17 goals and 16 assists and Zorc is well aware of the 20-year-old's struggles.
"He has had better and more efficient games," Zorc told German publication Ruhr Nachrichten.
"He's lacking a bit of natural lightness at the moment.
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"Of course we speak to him, but it's not something you can rediscover just by talking."
While manager Lucien Favre added: “You can’t be in top shape for a year. If it's not 100 per cent for a month, we have to accept that.”
Sancho has linked up with the England squad ahead of international games against the Republic of Ireland on Thursday, Belgium on Sunday and Iceland next Wednesday.
And Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate says Sancho needs to keep pushing himself to be a better player.
He said: “There is competition for places in those areas and there’s always a responsibility on us to get the best out of players.
“But also there’s a responsibility on them as well. He wants to be a top player. He can be a top player.
“He’s on a good pathway to do that but there’s lots of examples of players that didn’t quite do that as well. So there’s a challenge every day to keep improving and get better.”
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