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13th Apr 2024

Odds of Erik ten Hag being sacked have gone up due to Liverpool upset

Luke Davies

Due to changes in qualification criteria for European competition, Liverpool could keep the Dutchman in a job. 

The Reds played out a shocking 0-3 defeat at the hands of Italian side Atalanta on Thursday evening, leaving an uphill task for next week’s return fixture in Bergamo.

Part of the revamp means two extra places are up for grabs, Italy have already secured one of the places. England and Germany will battle for the final place. 

Liverpool’s defeat and West Ham United’s 2-0 defeat against Bundesliga leaders Bayern Leverkusen diminish the chances of a Premier League side gaining the extra European spot.

If Liverpool overturn the three-goal deficit this could lead to the UEFA Champions League qualifications spot going to the fifth-placed team in England. 

Currently, this is Aston Villa, who, themselves are battling for European silverware in the form of the UEFA Conference League, Unai Emery’s side lead Lille 2-1 after the first leg.

Arsenal and Manchester City may also have a hand in helping ten Hag retain his position at Old Trafford. Both teams essentially go into the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals level as both drew their fixtures against Bayern Munich and Real Madrid last week. 

Erik ten Hag’s future has been up for debate for some time but heightened by the introduction of INEOS chief, Jim Ratcliffe. Ratcliffe is thought to be an admirer of Gareth Southgate but may persist with the Dutchman depending on this season’s success, or lack of it. 

United look unlikely to finish fourth, currently, trailing Spurs and Aston Villa by 11 points with just seven Premier League fixtures left. They, also, have the chance to lift silverware and secured a favourable FA Cup semi-final draw against the second-tier side, Coventry City. The Red Devils face the Midlands outfit on Sunday, April 21st. Manchester City or Chelsea will await United in the final if they successfully negotiate the Coventry tie.

The Mancunians will travel to Bournemouth on Saturday Evening without nine first-team players. United’s defence is particularly weak as Raphael Varane, Lisandro Martinez and Victor Lindelof all nurse knocks.

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