Ten Hag has backed his under-fire ‘keeper
Erik ten Hag says their under-fire goalkeeper André Onana is the second best goalkeeper in the Premier League ‘according to the stats’ ahead of their trip to St James Park on Saturday.
The Cameroon international has been in the headlines once again after several mistakes during United’s 3-3 draw with Galatasaray in the Champions League.
The 27-year-old was arguably at fault for two of the goals on Wednesday night which left the club’s hopes of making the Last 16 of the tournament hanging by a thread.
Erik ten Hag praises Onana’s “strong character” despite series of high profile errors
It’s not the first night to forget Onana has had in their Champions League campaign.
He also made errors in the 4-3 loss to Bayern Munich at the start of the group phase.
However ten Hag has dismissed concerns about his £47.2 million summer signing from Inter Milan.
The Dutchman says: “If you analyse it well then you see he is the second-best goalkeeper in the Premier League based on stats,” said Ten Hag. “His expected preventing goals is the second-best in the Premier League.
“He’s doing well. He knows that in the Champions League he has made some mistakes but all over in the first five months he has done well.”
Onana cut a frustrated figure after the final whistle in Istanbul.
But Ten Hag believes the scrutiny will not affect his confidence.
“You have seen how he reacted to a bad performance like in Munich. At Burnley he was outstanding.
“He is a strong character, he is a personality and he will deal with it.”
To be fair, these stats from Opta seem to support his argument:
Photo Credit: Opta Sports
An uphill battle for United’s season
Onana isn’t the only player seemingly underperforming in what is ten Hag’s second season in charge of the club.
Eight wins and five losses in the Premier League has left them sixth in the league table.
However if results go their way they could overtake Tottenham and climb to fifth.
Their European campaign is much less optimistic…
They need to beat Bayern Munich and have Galatasaray vs Copenhagen FC end in a draw to progress in the tournament.
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