6 THINGS ERIK TEN HAG MUST DO TO SUCCEED AT MANUTD
By Kenny Ogunmiloro
Who is Eric Ten Hag?
He’s a 52year old, who currently manages the Ajax senior team in the Dutch Eredivise. He played football as a central defender and midfielder for 13years before he became a coach in 2012
His first official job was taking charge of Go-ahead Eagles in the 2nd division of the Dutch league and masterminded their promotion to the Eredivisie that same year.
Coach Erik Ten Hag left the job to join the Bayern Munich B team in 2013 where he had a chance to meet and train under Pep Guardiola who was the senior team coach at that period.
He left the position in 2015 after 2years to join FC Utrecht as their head coach in the Eredivise. He was at the club for 2 years where he finished 5th and 4th respectively before he joined Ajax in 2017. He has won 2 league titles, finish 2nd twice, and currently sits on top of the Eredivisie table in his 5th season at the club.
So for the same of records, Eric Ten Hag has never finished below the 5th position in the Dutch league before as a coach. He’s leaving Ajax after breaking the record of Louis Van Gaal as the fastest manager to reach 100 wins in the league, while LVG did his own in 137 games, Ten Hag achieved his own feet in just 128 games.
SIX THINGS HE MUST DO TO SUCCEED AT MAN UTD
While there is a report that 200m pounds will be given to him in the summer to buy new players, ETH may need more than the summer signings to make an immediate or lasting impact at the club. One thing is certain, he has been allowed to bring his assistant at Ajax, Mitchel Van Der Gaag while I also heard that ManUtd is on the verge of getting former Tottenham Head of recruitment and the current AS Monaco Sporting director Paul Mitchell to be the club’s new head of recruitment in amove that has been a great step towards identifying and getting quality players for the incoming coach.
Paul Mitchel was responsible for the recruitment of Dele Ali, Son Heung Min, Kierram Trippie, and Toby Alderweird at Tottenham, he did the same thing at RB Leipzig where he identified Christopher Nkunku and Dani Olmo. From his track record, he’s expected to do a great job at ManUtd if he eventually gets the same role.
So what should the fans expect from ETG as the coach, Paul Mitchel as the Head of recruitment, and Ralph Ragnick in his consultancy role in the summer? It looks like a new era is about to begin and it could be a great foundation for the plans to return ManUtd to its former glory.
Nevertheless, I have carefully thought of 6 things ETG MUST do if he wants to succeed at ManUtd.
1. Rebuild the squad – it’s a shame that this current ManUtd team has the most expensive defender(Harry Maguire), 2nd most expensive right-back(Wan Bissaka), the most expensive teenager (Jadon Sancho), most expensive midfielder (Paul Pogba), highest-earning goalkeeper (David De-Gea) and the highest-paid player in the league(Ronaldo), how all of these players can’t translate to success on the pitch is what ETH should unravel. This current team has no team spirit, no discipline, and a major overhaul should be done in every department aside from the goalkeeping department(DDG & Henderson are some of the best hands in the league)
ETH should not keep players like Pogba who has never had a consistent performance since his move from Juventus. Thank God ETG worked with Donny Van Der Beek at Ajax, he can work the magic again on the player and make him return to his best at ManUtd. There is also a Declan Rice at West Ham that I think should be signed as well.
He should ensure there is discipline in the team.
2. Remove Harry Maguire as the captain – Maguire has shown he doesn’t have the ability to lead this team on and off the pitch several times, how he’s been able to retain that position is what I do not understand. Many ManUtd fans have already signed a petition t have him removed and just yesterday, the police claimed Maguire received a bomb threat.
The weight of expectations on him as a captain and the most expensive defender has weighed him down, he has shown he’s error-prone and has been consistent with the errors. Look at how Azpilicuata has been leading Chelsea, look at Henderson/Milner/VVD at Liverpool, look at Fernandiho/KDB at Mancity. Maguire needs a break from that position and its what ETH should do now
3. Sign Harry Kane or a proven No.9 – I know it will be difficult to sign a player like Harry Kane especially if they don’t qualify for the UCL next season but they need a strike like him with a great number in terms of goal scoring. It’s a shame that a 37year old Ronaldo has been responsible for the most goals scored by the team this season, it should not be. ETG must get a proven goal poacher.
4. Cut the dominance of Sir Alex Ferguson on the team – Wayne Rooney said last year that “the presence of SAF is a pressure on the managers” and I can’t agree less with him. ETG should be in charge of the team 100%, he should dictate how he wants the team to play. I understand ManUtd is a traditional club and any coach must fit in, I would suggest Micheal Carrick should be drafted as a backroom staff but I heard ETH has requested the services of Steve McClaren who was once an assistant coach to SAF
5. Decide on C.Ronaldo’s Future – Ronaldo has been their best player this season with 21goals, his feat has cost the club an additional £850k in bonuses and can still be more for every goal he scores before the season. Another £3m is already waiting for him if he finishes as the top scorer for the club which is looking more likely.
Does this make financial sense? Does it send a good signal to other players he met at the club? ManUtd played the Europa League final and finished 2nd in the league WITHOUT him, why are they struggling to make the Top 4 with the GOAT? It means other players are not giving their best again, ETH should find out why Real Madrid and Juventus released him despite being the star boy of the team and decide if he wants to work with a player like that or not.
6. Beware of ManUtd Ex-players turned Pundits – The likes of Gary Neville, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, and Roy Keane have been instrumental to the criticisms of the past ManUtd managers. They criticized the playing style of Mourinho but backed OGS because he’s one of them. They have a big sense of entitlement and would always create a problem for a foreign manager at the club
ETG should watch his relationship with them and be prepared for criticism from the so-called analysts that were terrible managers after their playing careers.