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19th Aug 2022

Erik ten Hag ‘now fully understands’ why he was warned about Man United job

Robert Redmond

Ten Hag has had a difficult start to life at Man United

Erik ten Hag has been left ‘utterly stunned’ by Manchester United’s start to the season, according to reports.

The Dutch coach tasted defeat in both of Man United’s matches this season, with the club losing the opening fixture of the campaign at home to Brighton. The Red Devils followed that with a humiliating 4-0 defeat away to Brentford last weekend.

Ten Hag is the first Man United manager to lose his opening two matches since John Chapman in 1921.

Ten Hag was ‘warned’ about taking Man United job

Ahead of playing Liverpool at Old Trafford on Monday, it has been reported that Ten Hag is ‘utterly stunned’ by Man United’s awful performances in their first two games.

According to Miguel Delaney, writing in The Independent, the former Ajax coach ‘didn’t see any of this coming’, particularly after a positive pre-season.

Ten Hag is said to have held meetings with United staff and officials to get to the bottom of the club’s malaise. However, this has left him ‘in shock’ about the club’s structure, or lack thereof.

He reportedly now ‘fully understands’ why he was warned about taking the Man United job.

Ten Hag is also said to be taken aback by the quality of the teams in the bottom half of the Premier League table.

Ten Hag: ‘I expect a reaction from Man United players in Liverpool match’

Meanwhile, the Dutch coach said he hopes to see a positive reaction from his side in Monday’s match against Liverpool at Old Trafford.

“I was definitely not happy (about losing to Brentford),” Ten Hag told reporters at his pre-match press conference on Friday.

“And in football, you can talk about football, you can talk about planning our philosophy but the basic stuff has to be good, and that starts with the right attitude.

“So, you need a fighting spirit on the pitch and I didn’t see that from minute one.

“You have to bring it in every game on the pitch and of course, especially Monday night. But you bring it every game.”

Elsewhere, Lisandro Martinez, one of the three players Ten Hag has been able to sign since taking over, will reportedly be moved into midfield for the visit of the Reds.

The 5ft 9in centre-back was targeted by Brighton and Brentford and struggled desperately in both games.

The Argentinian played predominately at centre-back for Ten Hag at Ajax but also has experience of playing in the defensive midfield position.

Casemiro, the Real Madrid midfielder, looks set to join Man United, but it is unclear if he will be available to play against Liverpool on Monday.

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