LOSC Lille sign Renato Sanches from Bayern Munich in a deal worth up to €25 million. The Portuguese midfielder leaves Bayern just three years after signing with the German giants. Sanches’ development has only stalled since making the move to Munich, and he will no doubt be hoping to get back on track in Ligue 1.
LOSC Lille Sign Renato Sanches from Bayern
ℹ️ Renato Sanches will leave #FCBayern to join OSC Lille.
— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) August 23, 2019
What Could Have Been
Renato Sanches joined Bayern Munich in the summer of 2016 as one of the hottest prospects in world football. The then-18-year-old had just come off a breakout season with SL Benfica and was preparing to dominate the 2016 Euros with Portugal.
The former Golden Boy has never quite lived up to the hype since moving to Munich. Though the argument can easily be made that it is not entirely his fault, Sanches leaves Bayern a significantly less valued player than the one he was when he arrived.
The 22-year-old has never quite settled at Bayern. Playing time in the Bavarian capital was hard to come by on either side of his dreadful season-long loan to Swansea City. Despite Niko Kovac’s promise that things would change this season, Sanches ultimately decided he would have better luck elsewhere.
What Will He Offer Lille?
Although LOSC Lille sign Renato Sanches as just a shadow of the European wunderkind he once was, they still have much to gain from his signature. Sanches’ time at Bayern has not been totally void of any signs of positivity.
Last season, for example, he gave an excellent performance from midfield against his former side, Benfica, in the Champions League group stage. Sanches also had an excellent preseason this summer and — until recently — appeared set to battle hard for a spot in the Bayern midfield this season.
Sanches is hard to knock off the ball and always looks to drive play forward. He is not afraid to try a long-range shot if given the time and space. His dribbling is surprisingly technical, and he usually has no problem driving past his marker in midfield.
However, the 22-year-old still has plenty of areas where improvement is necessary. His concentration desperately needs some work, while passes are often either far too timid or entirely misplaced. He is an extremely hard-worker in midfield, but he must learn to couple his industry with smart positioning. Finally, his tackling can be a bit reckless, but that is mostly to be expected from a player of his mould.
LOSC Lille Sign Renato Sanches: A Versatile Midfielder
Ultimately, Renato Sanches has never really shown exactly where he fits best in midfield because he has hardly had the opportunity to do so. Lille manager Christophe Galtier most often utilizes a 4-2-3-1 formation. Sanches will, therefore, most likely operate as one of the two holding midfielders.
However, do not be surprised if the former Portugal international plays a few matches as a number 10 of sorts. He has the versatility to fit in at several positions. In fact, he could even feature out wide on occasion.
Ultimately, LOSC Lille signing Renato Sanches is a move that works best for all parties involved. Bayern get back a portion of their failed investment, Renato Sanches gets a chance to reignite his career, and Lille get a player who still has very much to prove in Europe and the talent to become a star in midfield.